WESST Pop-Up Shop Vendor Spotlight: Worthington Farms
By Lorena Schott | September 21, 2022
After a two-year hiatus, WESST is excited to host the 5th annual pop-up shop (Oct. 14th 11a-4p, 609 Broadway Blvd NE) where you can shop locally and find unique Made in New Mexico products and gifts. Over the next few weeks, we would like to introduce you to a few of our vendors to give everyone a preview of their products and the opportunity to learn about their entrepreneurial journey. We hope you enjoy!
Introducing Kristen Worthington – Worthington Pecan Farms
Where did the “big idea” for your business come from?
We bought a pecan farm 5 years ago. The prices of in-shelled pecans dropped dramatically from one year to the next and I wondered what I could do to make more money. I came up with an idea that if I could get my pecans shelled, I could make a lot of products that I could sell and offer the same
What was your key driving force to become an entrepreneur?
My love to create and I love figuring things out.
What obstacles did you face while creating your business and how did you overcome them?
I have had obstacles at every turn of this business. Putting in the building, COVID, and supply chain problems have been plaguing us from the very beginning. We got financed in January 2020. We just have been pivoting, pivoting, and pivoting. When we are blocked, we try to find another way to get what we need to keep going. When the building didn’t get done right away, we modified our workshop so that we could start shelling nuts. Not all the shelling equipment fits but we are able to use our crop. My house is being overtaken by shelves, machines, and inventory. We keep going but when we finally get into our building, it will be wonderful.
How do you market your business? Which tactics have been most successful?
We have a website and are active on social media but going to the local Farmer’s Market and Festivals around the country have been the best way to market our business.
How do you stand out from your competitors?
We have very innovative pecan products. Our slogan is “Pecans…Who Knew?” and we have created a lot of pecan products that have people saying just that. (i.e., Pecan Lotion, Pecan Brownie Spread, and Flavored Pecans both savory and sweet)
Would you do anything differently if you could start your business over again? If so, what?
No. I have learned so much. Because we have had to slow down to get where we want, we are finding what really works and what our customers really like.
What advice do you have for other people who want to start their own business?
Get connected to the mentor network and take advantage of all the free resources out there.
What do you do when you’re not working?
That doesn’t happen very much but when I do have time I love to read.
What was your biggest takeaway from your work with WESST?
They have such a great program that helps first time business owners with classes and one on one mentorship. I have really appreciated all the help that they have provided me and my business. They are one of my biggest supports.
To view the list of vendors who will be showcasing their items, or to get more information, please visit the WESST Event Page.
About the Author
Lorena Schott is a native New Mexican that brings a wealth of experience to the WESST team. Before joining WESST in 2009, she worked for Intel where she was acknowledged for her establishment of Intel’s centralized on-line system, rewarding and recognizing employees worldwide.