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ABQ Jerky Business Expands, Aims at Wholesale

By Ellen Marks – Journal Assistant Business Wednesday, November 7th, 2018 at 3:45pm

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Michael Grier, who started out making a little bit of jerky for his family, has turned his hobby into such a successful business that he’s now operating out of a 5,800-square-warehouse.

It’s the third location for Mike’s Jerky, which is planning to expand beyond its own retail shops into the greater world of groceries, convenience stores and other outside outlets.

“We have a lot of loyal customers in New Mexico, especially Albuquerque,” Grier said. “There was such a demand from those people wanting us to do it.”

The business already had two retail outlets and a small kitchen at its Menaul NE location, but it needed to scale up to tackle the wholesale market, Grier said.

The new kitchen and retail store at 4900 Jefferson NE has all new equipment that Grier and his staff of nine have been using to get their jerky just right.

After more testing and federal inspections, the business expects to start selling at the new outlets at the first of the year, Grier said.

It’s a far cry from the 350 square feet of space at Grier’s first location, which he shared with a woman who was making and selling peanut brittle.

It was 2009 — “the worst possible time because of the economy” — but Grier had lost his job selling recreational vehicles and decided to take the plunge into the world of jerky.

The business got a boost in 2016 when it was included in the Travel Channel’s “Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern.” The episode pointed out the unusual nature of New Mexico jerky — usually thin and dry rather than thick and chewy with “lots of sugar” — and mentioned Grier’s most popular product: green chile jerky.

In the real estate transaction, Mike’s Jerky was represented by Ben Nolte and Thomas Mortensen, Associate Brokers at Allen Sigmon.

Mike’s Jerky – Our Take

It was a pleasure working for a local company that is thriving and expanding. Mike’s Jerky has been getting a ton of national exposure from the Food Channel, and we are excited to put them at Jefferson Business Center. This location will help them process their beef jerky and has a strong retail presence. We believe this is the perfect location to help them expand their operation.

Mike was a great client to work with. As a team, we worked through the negotiation process and overcame challenges that arose during the buildout of the tenant improvements.


Allen Sigmon Real Estate Group is a full-service commercial real estate company based in Albuquerque with an expertise in acquisitions, brokerage, development, and property management. As a local company, we pride ourselves in our knowledge of the New Mexico commercial market and the relationships we are able to foster compared to larger national firms. Our office works with every kind of commercial property; including office, industrial, retail, land, and multifamily.

Our understanding of client needs and concerns not only comes from our experience as an office but also as owners and investors of commercial property ourselves. We have an excellent team in place that is eager to work on your behalf; our results speak for themselves.

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