There is a nationwide consumer alert due to a website based in Mid-Missouri.
Dozens of customers have contacted the Better Business Bureau after New Bloomfield-based Heirloom Acres Seeds failed to ship orders and respond to calls.
The company has complaints dating back to 2009, including unfilled orders, orders that took four months to process instead of the promised two weeks, and calls and emails that went unanswered.
Even worse, the owners portray themselves as a Christian company and include bible verses on their website. The owners, Thom and Renate Kirk, peg the business as a family operation, even going as far as including a photo of the family on the site.
The picturesque red barn on their website is a far cry from the dilapidated building and weed garden that ABC 17 News found just outside of New Bloomfield.
ABC 17’s Daniel Winn went to the location hoping to ask the company’s owners why orders are going unfilled and why customers are getting scammed.
All that he found was an old schoolhouse, empty post office boxes, weeds growing in pots and no answer at the door.
Neighbors say they thought the business ceased operations nearly two years ago and that’s when they say things got quiet.
However, Heirloom is still taking online orders and the BBB is still getting calls from customers.
“They’ve ordered seeds and they haven’t heard anything back from the company,” said Mike Odneal of the Better Business Bureau. “You know they were worried because they just hadn’t heard anything.”
ABC 17 tried to call the number listed on the website, but the number is connected to a fax machine.
One customer, Belinda Strom of Virgina, told ABC 17 News she ordered seeds in January.
“After about two months and no response, I kind of got concerned I would never get anything,” she said.
After numerous calls to the BBB, she finally received part of her order four months later and a partial refund.
“They sent me cash in an envelope,” Strom said.
However, not every customer was as lucky.
“I placed the order the first part of February and I never received the seeds,” said Connie Rideout, who lives in Colorado.
The customers say they believe there are more victims nationwide.
If anyone has done business with Heirloom Acres Seeds company in New Bloomfield, they are encouraged to reach out to the Better Business Bureau.