Sulphur Springs, Texas
Katie and Kory Koon started Rail 19 to provide custom meat and wild game processing to their community.
Katie and Kory started in agriculture as dairy farmers. However, not long after they opened the business, they faced the challenging decision to close down the operation. Despite this early set-back, the Koons knew they wanted to stay in agriculture. They dreamed of cultivating a business they could eventually pass down to the family they were beginning. Undeterred, they set about planning what type of operation they wanted to open.
Filling a need in the community
After a lot of brainstorming and business planning, Katie and Kory decided to start Rail 19, a custom meat processing facility, with their friends, Veronica Mead and her husband, Richard.
The Koons and the Meads were inspired to build a place for farmers, much like themselves, to bring their livestock and wild game for quality processing. With a rich heritage in the dairy and beef industry and a passion for hunting, the two families realized a need to bring custom, quality, sustainable meat processing to their community.
Spanning 13,000 square feet, Rail 19 includes a retail area for producers to market local beef and pork, two processing floors, a grand beef aging cooler and a state of the art smokehouse.
The Farm Credit Difference
When they began to seek financing, Katie took her request to a bank only to be turned down. “We had all the makings of what would have been good, but if it didn't look great on paper. At a bank, it held everything up,” Katie said.
Things were different at Texas Farm Credit. Instead of doubt, Katie spoke with loan officers who were excited by the ideas she brought to the table. “There was not anyone at Texas Farm Credit that we talked to that didn't believe Rail 19 wouldn't be successful,” she said.
In addition to confidence, Katie appreciates the relationships she has built with the Texas Farm Credit team. “You can go in and talk to Cody or Preston and they are so personable,” she said. “While you can go to a lot of places that will offer you money, it's different when you get to actually know who you're working with.”