Glass Bottle Exchange Project

$150,000 goal

Campaign created 3 months ago
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A quick Kalispell Kreamery glass bottle story…  
In the 70's Bill and Marilyn Hedstrom were fulfilling the wholesome concept of raw milk sales in reusable glass bottles. Straight from the farm to your table with as little environmental impact as possible. Hedstrom's were milking just enough cows to support the family and were managing a sustainable farm. With the change of times and outlawing of raw milk in Montana, the dairy had to make some major changes from retail raw milk sales into regulated bulk milk sales through cooperatives. The co-ops would process, package and sell the milk under the co-ops own label. With this model the dairy was forced to grow its herd to be able to sustain itself but strived to maintain its conservative practices of reusing and recycling. As the concept of bottling their own milk again was becoming a reality with Kalispell Kreamery, the dairy revisited glass bottle packaging. Circumstances, however, did not allow for reusable glass bottles to be part of the plan at the time. But it has always been on the backburner, just waiting for the right ignition…

Flathead Valley, Montana has been our home all our lives. We love its mountainous beauty and generous people. We are raising our family here and feeding the community with our cow’s milk. We currently bottle 2000 gallons of milk a day, directly from our own 250 milk cows. Our milk is all Cream-On-Top and as close to raw as you can get in the State of Montana. Our processing facility is right next to our milking barn. Our time between cow and your table is often less than 24 hours. That is fresh milk! 

Recently plastic recycling has become more challenging in our community. We have had an extreme increase in demand for us to offer our milk in reusable glass bottles as a result. After much thought and consideration, we have decided that now is the time to try a reusable glass bottle milk program, but we need the support of our community to make it happen.  

A reusable glass bottle program will offer the community many things:

- Milk packaged in glass is more environmentally friendly and will help lessen the impact of plastic filling up our landfills.  
- Milk tastes better when it comes from glass. 
- People will be able to enjoy the nostalgia of glass bottles. 

To make this project a reality we will need to remodel our current facility, purchase new equipment, make the initial bottle/specialized crate purchase and purchase a specialized vehicle equipped for delivery and receival of glass bottles. Total project timeline will be about 1 year, with initial sales going out Summer 2019. 

Project Objective-Objective Cost 

Remodel current facility- redo room floor, install glass bottle filler, rewire and replumb hot water system, install glass bottle track, rework receiving area to receive and wash glass bottles. $24,000.00
Purchase bottle washers $20,000.00
Purchase 300-gallon milk tank $25,000.00 
Purchase industrial hot water tank $3,000.00 
Purchase specialized delivery truck $50,000.00 
Purchase bottles and crates $28,000.00 
Total Costs $150,000.00 

So why Crowdsourcing? 

 All of this will require a considerable investment with very little return. We really want to help but from a business point of view, we are selling all of our milk through the current method.  So the investment of a new project will not increase our income, it will just transfer milk sales from one form to another, which makes it hard to cover the investment of the new project. In other words, we will not have enough return for the investment. We have wanted to do this for a long time and have always run into the financial wall. With such a strong community response for more environmentally responsible packaging we thought maybe now is the chance to raise some money to offer the program. 

Once the program is up and running it will be self-sustainable. There are several reusable glass bottles in the USA (none in Montana though). They are all similar. Our plan is to start out simple, with us offering reusable ½ gallon glass bottles of whole milk. The exchanges will be available at select area grocery stores. The initial purchase of the milk will include a bottle deposit. After you have used the milk in your glass bottle, return it to the location you purchased it at and exchange for a full bottle or get your deposit back. It will be an interesting time for us as we work out the logistics and management of this program.
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Thank you, everyone, for your support during our reusable glass bottle campaign. Unfortunately, we did not make our goal and will be refunding all the money that was donated. GoFundMe will directly return the funds in 12-14 working days. If you no longer have the card that you used to donate please let them know right away by going to- http://www.gofundme.com/contact .
Once again, thank you for your support. Please know that we are still willing to revisit this project when the timing or funds are right. Our doors are always open, please feel free to contact us anytime.
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Thank you to everyone! We are slowly moving towards our goal. Every time you go to the grocery store and buy a gallon of milk and think to yourself "It would be great if this came in glass" send some money our way to help us make that a reality. Please know that if we do not reach our goal of offering milk in glass bottles your money will be refunded! To show our appreciation for everyone who has supported us we will be hosting a "party" on our farm. We will keep you posted on the "party".

We have been asked if the glass bottles will be offered in Missoula as well. Eventually it will. To start with, however, we will be keeping it in Kalispell while we work out the kinks. If Kalispell and Missoula go well we may move out statewide. We are always open to new growth and customer service ideas!
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$150,000 goal

Campaign created 3 months ago
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