Tanka Spotlight: Andy's Big Red Caboose, Jerky Junction Co., Truckee, CA<br>

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Tanka Spotlight: Andy's Big Red Caboose, Jerky Junction Co., Truckee, CA

By Jason Stover, social networking specialist intern

Follow Jason on Twitter @tankabar_jasond
Read Jason's bio here

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Since our launch in October 2007, we have been privileged to work with outstanding retail partners. These folks are so passionate about their businesses and their customers, we decided we needed to share their unique stories. Our Tanka Spotlight series will run every other Thursday here at TankaBar.com. If you'd like to be featured here or if you'd like to nominate a Tanka retailer for a story, please contact Jason Stover at jasonstover@tankabar.com.

RETAILER: Andy's Big Red Caboose of the Jerky Junction Co., Truckee, CA

OWNER:Ian Baird

LOCATION: 11401 Donner Pass Road, Truckee, CA

Tanka Bar: How did you get started?
Ian Baird: When I was young, I worked for my uncle, hustling peanuts and beer at the Dodger games. I also worked at the first established location for my brother's company, Jerky Junction. I'm an inventor of foods from "pastry pockets" to "buffalo balls or nuts."

TB: Your business really is in a caboose! Where did it come from?
IB: This caboose came from the Union Pacific Railroad. It was active from 1943 to 1973. For 30 years, it was active on the railroad. Now, 36 years later, it is Andy's Big Red Caboose. The 250 square-foot space is 10 feet wide by 25 feet long. It has a centered cupola (an upper observation window). The centered cupola was used by brake men, the service men and the railroad conductor. Its main purpose was to watch for problems that might occur while going down the track.

TB: How long has Jerky Junction been in the caboose?
IB: In 1974, the caboose was the Tahoe Brewery. Then it was a restaurant called the Pizza Junction. It was also used as an office for a bail bondsman. Jerky Junction has occupied the caboose for 18 years.

TB: How did you find out about the Tanka Bar?
IB: I was thinking I wanted to bring the taste of buffalo jerky to the skiers of Truckee. We are in Truckee, CA. It has over two dozen ski resorts and is located next to Lake Tahoe. So, I decided to Google "Buffalo Bars" and up popped the Tanka Bar.

TB: What Tanka Bar flavor do you like the most?
IB: I like the spicy. They have more taste.

TB: How are they selling for you?
IB: It was slow at first, but through a little encouragement, they started to sell. We moved the location of the Tanka Bars by the register. After we started selling the Tanka Bites, they started to move even faster. I put them with the regular bagged jerky, but the Tanka Bites are one of my best movers. The Tanka Bars started to sell better when I dropped the price from $2.80 to $2.50.

TB: What do you like most about Tanka Bars and Bites?
IB: I wish the bars were bigger, but I really enjoy the taste. It has a good mix of buffalo and cranberries.

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Previous Comments

Chief Petty Officer Schneider on Sun May 5, 2013 15:13:50
I am currently deployed on the USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110) in the Arabian Gulf. I received some of your products from my mother who lives near Mobridge, SD and would like to order some online. I shared some of your jerky with my friends and to say they loved it is an understatement. Please contact me via schneicl@DDG110.navy.mil. i would like to know if you guys can ship to FPO addresses.
Thanks for your time,
STGC Chris Schneider

SARA on Fri Jan 1, 2010 16:40:59
Finally a healthy bar that tastes so good!