Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 31

MAKIN'
MOO JUICE

Shatto Milk bottles, delivers white gold
by Zach Smith | zsmith@ruralmissouri.coop

our community got behind us, that really gave us pride in
what we do."
The milk's popularity spoke for itself: In 2006, the
perating a Century Farm and an 80-year-old
Shattos won the Missouri Small Business Persons of the
family dairy in 2020 doesn't happen without
Year and first-runner up in the national Small Business
weathering a few storms and rolling with the
Persons of the Year awards from the U.S. Small Business
punches. Few surprises over the years have hit
Administration. Their product even made it to the Oval
small businesses harder or more immediately than did
Office and the desk of then-President George W. Bush. The
safety concerns surrounding COVID-19. When spring
president's favorite? Chocolate.
arrived and many Missourians were shuttered in their
Fast forward to the present day. The accolades and
homes amidst uncertain circumstances, Barb Shatto and
awards received at national and international competiher son, Matt, were already on a first-name basis with
tions are innumerable. A broadband internet connection
adapting to changing times. They did it the old-fashioned
through United Fiber makes conducting business from the
way: home delivery from the milk truck.
farm not only possible but also fast. The herd num"This past year has been troubling for the
whole country," Barb says. "People want to eat
bers about 500 black-and-white Holsteins, with a
at home, want their groceries delivered and want
few red-and-whites here and there. Barb credits
Osborn
all-local products. We can help support the entire
Herdsman and Farm Manager Matt Schapeler
with keeping the dairy's four-legged employees
community in a better, stronger way."
The pandemic wasn't the first surprise for the
happy and healthy.
"They're exceptional cows," Barb says. "We
Shattos when it came to their Osborn-based busifocus on quality, so we might have five that
ness. When the family decided to forego sales to
are high producers instead of 10. It's a way
other processors and start bottling and selling their
to save money but still have a good product.
own hormone-free milk directly to stores and conWe want to meet needs as well as keep our
sumers in 2003, they weren't sure if the gamble would
system efficient."
pay off. But milk prices and income were low. If something
From the milking stations to the processing room and
didn't change, the United Electric Cooperative members
through the bottling machine to the cooler, the dairy does
would have to sell their herd.
a brisk business supplying more than 75 grocery stores
"We only had 80 cows at the time, and we were conplus some coffee shops and convenience stores in northcerned about having to pour that milk down the drain,"
west Missouri. Demand for home delivery of Shatto prodBarb says. "That didn't happen."
ucts as well as eggs, beef, jams and jellies sold by other
Far from it. When glass bottles hit shelves in local Price
local producers increased four-fold this spring since it was
Chopper, Hy-Vee and Meiners markets, word spread.
first implemented in 2017. Matt, who oversees delivery
Demand increased to the point that the Shattos had to
operations, purchased three more trucks just to meet the
buy three new herds to meet production. They expanded to
additional need.
make butter and eventually added milk soaps, ice creams,
The semitrucks look slightly different than milk wagons
cheeses, eggnog and nondairy drinks to their offerings.
of old, and Shatto's iconic glass bottles, each bearing a legBarb's husband, Leroy, built a country store for visitors.
end such as "Family," "Fresh" or "Yummy," along with an
Tours became so popular that a larger store was required,
amusing quip about the product in hand are equally hard
complete with an ice cream bar, gift shop and cheese room.
to miss. If the visual appeal seems hard to deny, try argu"It was challenging those first five years," Barb recalls of
ing with your taste buds.
the bottling-era's uncertain beginnings. "But the fact that

O

NOVEMBER 2020 | RURALMISSOURI.COOP

31


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Rural Missouri - November 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - November 2020

Contents
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - Cover1
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - Cover2
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - Contents
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 4
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 5
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 6
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 7
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 8
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 9
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 10
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 11
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 12
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 13
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 14
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 15
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 16
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 17
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 18
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 19
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 20
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 21
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 22
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 23
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 24
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 25
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 26
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 27
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 28
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 29
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 30
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 31
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 32
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 33
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 34
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 35
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 36
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 37
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 38
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 39
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 40
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 41
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 42
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 43
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 44
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 45
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 46
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 47
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 48
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 49
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 50
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Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 53
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - 54
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - Cover3
Rural Missouri - November 2020 - Cover4
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