WDAZ: Your Home Team

Published January 08, 2011, 08:15 PM

A Small Business Doing Better Than Ever Before

L&M Meats in Grand Forks has grown over the past four decades because of great customer service and a product they are proud of.

A family owned business in Grand Forks is booming after taking the time to get to know their customers.

Running a smaller family owned business can be tough in this day and age, but the Novak family has run L & M Meats in town for more than four decades. What's their secret?

"You always worry you know, gee you see an ad in the paper where everyone's selling stuff cheaper just to bring people in. We just stick to our guns and make a good product and hopefully we have a lot of return customers every year." co-owner Jeff Novak said.

Jeff along with his brother Laddie Junior run the store, their father Laddie retired almost 5 years ago, but still has a say in what goes on.

"I said, "Dad, there's a nice lot on the South end of Grand Forks" and "you kids are crazy" he said. Well, here we are and we've added on once already. We closed our North end store so we have everything under one roof here." Novak said.

This small business went from just 5 people working here back in 1970 to now almost 30 people working here. In part, because of loyal customers.

John Watts has worked at the store for more than 30 years and can't imagine working anyplace else.

"I know a lot of customers yes that come in and they know me and I know them and they call me by name and I really enjoy that." Watts said.

The Novak's still use old family recipes and make everything from scratch including 30 different kinds of bratwurst, homemade sausage and line of meats. The recipes along with customer service are part of what's kept this little store open for all these years.

"I still do to this day get a phone call after Christmas from a few people and say "Hey Jeff, we had our prime rib, it was fantastic." And I always here about the bad things, but the good things make you feel good inside especially in a small business." Novak said.

The store on State Mill Road closed in 2002 when they added the addition to the store at 2801 South Washington in Grand Forks.