There's been a long break from any posts here because I've been on vacation in the French Alps. I decided it was going to be as work free a vacation as possible, in an effort to rejuvenate my enthusiasm for The Olive Oil Source, to come up with some new ideas, and to leave behind the inevitable day-to-day frustrations. Here is how I did.
I did forget the frustrating aspects for the most part, at least during the trip. Just before I left, however, I saw an article in a publication that was essentially the blog post I wrote on May 21 but it gave no credit for its source. This is quite frustrating especially since it has happened repeatedly with them. It is a good publication that is very useful to the industry and I think it degrades them not to show sources. Prior to leaving, I also read that the big importers to the U.S. said they were strengthening their standards to be "the most robust olive oil standards in America". That is quite a statement that could be picked apart very easily, but fortunately that is not my responsibility. I'm so glad I went on vacation! I really did forget about this kind of thing for a bit.
The break did serve to rejuvenate my enthusiasm for our business though. Rather than getting down and feeling uninspired trying to compete with entities that will print anything to get a sale, Brian, our general manager, and I are committed to a completely different approach. We're looking for new products that we feel really confident about and like to use ourselves. Brian is in New York at the Fancy Food Show, meeting with vendors to see if he can track down anything we feel qualifies to add to our lineup. At the same time he is meeting with a few of our existing vendors to keep those ties strong. Meanwhile, I am and will be working on new products and am looking forward to consulting on two new orchards in the near future with the hope that we can work together further down the line. Nothing makes me more enthusiastic about the business than getting into the field and working with growers.
I'm not so sure about the new ideas, although there are a few new products we will be developing. I think what came out of this break more than anything else for me is that we should stick with what has gotten us this far. That is, primarily, listening to our customers and trying to source good products they want that we do not currently carry. It is time to get back out there and talk to our customers and for all of you, if there is something you would like to see us carry, please do not hesitate to let us know.