Thursday, May 28, 2015

From farmer to businessman

J-E Editor

The Downtown Market in Slaughters is alive with activity most mornings as farmers drop in for coffee and breakfast before they begin their day’s labor in the field. Located on US 41, just a few hundred feet from Crop Production Services and just a few miles from the bulk of Webster County’s eastern farm land, it’s perfectly located to be a hub in the farming community.

That makes it fitting that the business’s new owner is himself a farmer.
Jacob Joiner, who lives between Sebree and the small community of Onton, has raised tobacco for several years, and intends to continue doing so despite stepping into the business world.

“I was self employed before, and I wanted to stay on that track,” he said. “I wanted something that would allow me to spend more time with my son, and this is the perfect place. He can come to work with me and the people here love him.”
Joiner admits that jumping from the tobacco field to running the market is a bit of a stretch, but he’s confident that, with the help of several long time market employees, he can make it work.

“I can’t say enough about the employees,” he said. “I’ve got a lot of good people working for me. Most of them have been here for years. Some even moved here from the Cats Market fourteen years ago.”

Joiner only plans a few changes to what the market offers, and he says those changes will only be minor.

“I mainly just want to clean the place up a little and maybe improve some of the items that are already on the menu,” Joiner said. “We’ll still have Hunts Brothers Pizza and we’ll still have catfish and frog legs every Friday night. We offer good quality food and good prices all the time.”

He said that he did lose a few of the regular customers in the transition, but he expected that. Just as some regulars came in just because they were friends with the previous owner, there are new customers who come in because they know him. But he insists that the Downtown Market will be the same now as it was before.

“I was good friends with the previous owner, and I already know most of the customers, so its been a good first month,” he said. “Some people asked me why I would try something like this. All I can say is I’m doing it for my son, and you never know til you try.”

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