Stephanie Schenkel (left) and Chloe Stunzi began their healthy animal feed delivery business, C&S Feeds, in October 2022. (Contributed)

Stephanie Schenkel (left) and Chloe Stunzi began their healthy animal feed delivery business, C&S Feeds, in October 2022. (Contributed)

Salmon Arm friends start business to provide animal owners with healthy feed options

C&S Feeds delivers wholesome, often single-ingredient feed around Shuswap, Okanagan

Two horse lovers are working together to provide ranchers, animal lovers and livestock owners with healthy, wholesome feed options.

Chloe Stunzi and Stephanie Schenkel met in a Shuswap pony club in 2016 and became fast friends. When Schenkel needed someone to ride some of her horses for show at a fair in Armstrong, she knew who to ask. Stunzi agreed to help out her friend and their bond has only grown.

The two women have owned and been involved with horses most of their lives. Both still have and love horses, and have turned that passion into a business, C&S Feeds, named after themselves.

Once feed stores in Salmon Arm stopped carrying the products Stunzi and Schenkel liked and believed were healthy for their animals, they took matters into their own hands. In October 2022, they began buying and ordering feed and supplies they wanted. The two then researched what was available in Salmon Arm and asked local people what they want and what the feed stores lacked.

“We were trying to feed our own horses really good quality feed, and then wanted to help everyone else do that,” said Stunzi. “There’s a lot of feed out there that is processed, full of fillers, preservatives and additives, so we’re trying to find the good stuff and people are loving it.”

The business has grown from taking and organizing a few orders once in a while to steady, free deliveries. Stunzi and Schenkel will deliver throughout the Shuswap, to Falkland and Westwold, south to Oliver and Keremeos with Okanagan stops in between, and trips out to Merritt and Kamloops as well. Local delivery is weekly, with other routes delivered every three to four weeks. For orders large enough, they will deliver even farther.

“If someone is looking for something and they can’t find it, we’re more than happy to help if we can get our hands on it,” said Stunzi. “The only thing is it has to fit our idea. Some people ask for things that don’t fit in our morals so we won’t bring that in. We have to agree, and we both know a lot about a lot of products so that’s easy.”

C&S Feeds prioritizes whole-grain feed that is healthy and easy to understand. With a lot of what they carry having only one ingredient, like flax, peas or barley, Stunzi and Schenkel like to able to read the labels they sell.

Focusing on a cleaner and healthier way of feeding animals, Stunzi said both she and Schenkel were surprised how much people love the idea and have supported them, and love to hear how it’s benefiting people’s horses and other animals. They are getting lots of great feedback and many repeat customers, she said. While not wanting to branch out too far from providing feed, Stunzi said they have started to bring in things like bagged straw and shavings on request.

“People have animals for a reason; they love them. They want to feed them like they feed themselves,” said Stunzi. “Even if they’re raising animals to eat them, they still want to know exactly what’s in that animal before they eat it.”

C&S Feeds might branch out into pet foods for dogs and cats and see what people are wanting or needing but can’t buy locally, but for now they are focused on farm animals. She said they can get supplies for cows, horses, goats, sheep, pigs, ducks and chickens.

As for what’s next, Stunzi and Schenkel are actively looking for a storage space to be able to keep their inventory closer to Salmon Arm. Currently they store it at Schenkel’s home in Silver Creek and they’d like a warehouse more central, to cut down on driving times on delivery days. While they don’t want to open a retail storefront yet, and they like delivering as a part of their service, Stunzi said a common spot to meet people for optional pickups would help.

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@willson_becca
rebecca.willson@saobserver.net

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