JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- "It's sort of a dirty little secret no one wants to tell. I got chicken behind a bowling alley out of a truck, but I love it. It's great chicken," said Mike Conrad, owner of Zaycon Foods.
While most of us are used to going to the grocery store to buy things like chicken and ground beef, a new concept is catching on in Jacksonville. Conrad calls it a drive-through meat market.
"We sell boneless, skinless chicken breasts, 93/7 ground beef, ham, sausage, mostly proteins but sometimes fruits and sometimes vegetables," said Conrad.
Selling in bulk and straight from ranchers and processors to you, Conrad said he's able to deliver fresh, quality food at price that is hard to beat. All you have to do is sign up online, pre-pay and then show up on the scheduled day.
"When we email them we say, 'hey we are selling the boneless, skinless chicken breast at $1.79' or 'we are selling this or that' and then they can log in. They will see the price and what it is and pre-purchase. Everything we do is pre-sold. When we do an event, it's actually just a delivery. We are delivering the food. We don't actually sell anything on site," said Conrad.
The events, often held in church parking lots, usually feature one or two food items like chicken or a ham and bacon event. You have to order a minimum of 15 to 40 pounds depending on the item, and the food is hormone free and fresh not frozen where possible.
"You go through it pretty quick. If you have a family of four or five, you're going to go through that within a month or month and a half. If you go buy the beef, you'll go through it even faster," said Conrad.
His brother came up with the idea of a drive-through meat market and started the company in 2010. Conrad said they went from being on welfare to having a booming business that has now expanded to 48 states with more than 150,000 customers.
"Price is what brings people in. The taste is everything. It's the quality that keeps them. It really is and the service because it's fresh. A lot of people have never had fresh chicken or fresh ground beef. There is a night and day difference in taste," said Conrad.
So just how much can you save? The company said the average American eats 90 pounds of chicken a year. With chicken as cheap as $1.69 a pound, that is about $600 in savings a year. Events are planned in Jacksonville in March and April and the company plans to add more locations around the First Coast as soon as enough people in an area sign up.
(Video courtesy of Good Morning America.)
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