We had the good fortune of connecting with Blake Shook and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Blake, how do you think about risk?
Just starting, or running a business is a risk. On top of that, most of my businesses today revolve around food production and agriculture. The weather forecast and weather radar is my stock market. So, overall, I would say I am not risk adverse. I was fortunate to learn early on that in most cases, money must be spent, yet spent wisely, to make more money. I always focused on spending money on assets, or things which could be sold and I could recoup my money. That allowed for some fairly risky purchases, but I usually had, and have, a viable plan to reverse course if something goes wrong.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
We raise honeybees, harvest the honey, sell it to grocery stores & online, and help others get started in beekeeping. It’s a blast! I started when I was about 12, and built the company through high school. When I graduated, I moved right into beekeeping full time, and never looked back! While I was a solo operation in the early days (with the exception of lots of car rides from my parents and advice from irreplaceable mentors), I quickly realized I needed help as the business grew. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to hire & partner with incredibly talented people on all sides of the business who we simply couldn’t have grown without. We are very unique because we do everything, from honey production, to packaging, to selling honey,(Desert Creek Honey) to teaching beekeeping and selling beekeeping supplies (Texas Bee Supply). There are very few companies left who are fully integrated in our industry. It has been a tremendous amount of hard work, but I’ve learned that all good things do require hard work! We are passionate about honeybees, food, and most of all, people.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
-Tasting tour of downtown Mckinney- we’d hit Local Yocal, Rye, The Yard, and Harvest. -Tour the Arboretum in Dallas, the Fort Worth Zoo, and the Heard Museum for some hiking. -Dinner & movie at the Movie House & Eatery in Mckinney. -Visit Luscomb Farms in Anna & Texas Bee Supply in Blue Ridge for local treats -Breakfast at Sam’s Restaurant and Starwood Cafe, both in McKinney
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
To the family, friends, mentors and employees who have tolerated my 1000 mistakes & helped build a company we can all be proud of.
Instagram: tbsblueridge & desertcreekhoney