Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in food and beverage but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Dean and Jayne Bredlau, Owners of The Greensted, LLC., located in Zumbrota, MN, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

We are a Minnesota urban farm business growing microgreens and mixed salad greens with microgreens distributed via wholesale to grocery and co-ops stores. We grow seasonal garden produce distributed via Community Supported Agriculture membership shares, direct to customers, and limited products in retail stores. We also have an on-farm retail grocery store that is entirely stocked with regionally sourced foods, care, and home products. This store supports 70+ small producer businesses and offers 500 items to our community. Supporting local has never been easier.

Our customers are those who value high-quality food and healthy living, desire to support local producers and suppliers, and want something different than mainstream discount store food, empty of nutrition even if it is supposed to be healthy. Our customers put quality products from an authentic and ethical business over price.

Tell us about yourself

Dean had a keen interest in returning to some aspect of farming, and Jayne had aspirations of building a reputable brand name. Merging the two dreams has resulted in an urban farm. Our fresh produce is always grown organically, with regenerative practices solidly in place. We believe in a regenerative mindset for communities - what we do locally stays local. What we spend locally supports an economically sustainable environment for families and businesses to thrive.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Three enterprises under one brand. We were forced to change our name due to a cease and desist. While we started with microgreens under one name, that name would have been limited as a brand. Effective Jan. 1, 2020, we became The Greensted, a brand with infinite possibilities for products and services. In 2021 we moved to a new facility, started the produce gardens, opened a retail store, and offered our first Community Education classes. Our microgreens can be found in 50 stores throughout the Twin Cities and SE Minnesota. It was a big year.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

The endless challenges and hours worked. The employees get to go home at the end of their shift, and the owners get to finish what didn't get done. The sales challenges, business reputation, financial management, branding, and marketing tasks, all while producing the highest quality fresh produce available.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Do your research. Before you buy equipment and supplies, spend a year learning. Learn your product, learn your market, and learn about business.
  2. Spend time and dollars on brand building.
  3. Determine your end goal. What does your business look like? Where is your market? What are they looking for? What are your vision and mission? They are different.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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