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so i am working on a business plan to start growing all natural, pesticide/insecticide free, gmo free heirloom veggies locally.  my whole business model is based around sustainable high quality food and my target market is middle/lower class who struggle to afford good quality veggies.  my pricing would focus on wholesale marketing and bulk sales. 


i decided to contact our local farmers market to get information on lot rentals so i could start my financial projections.  i called the local rep and spoke with her and what i found out totally shocked me.  they have very specific pricing guidelines and you are not allowed to sell veggies for less than 30% of the same highest price vegetable being sold.  they also do not allow bulk discounts or "dumping" which is when reduce prices at the end of market in order to get rid of your excess produce.  they focus on price fixing at retail prices...which may be beneficial for the farmer but can have terrible affects on a lower income consumers ability to afford to shop there. 


honestly this makes me very angry.  having spent years of my life struggling to afford good quality food i am now FINALLY in a position to grow much of my food myself.  i know the struggle that many people face....they WANT to buy all natural gmo free foods and support local sustainable farming but cant afford to or are not in a position to grow their own.  now the very place that should be helping people gain access to good food is essentially pricing it out of the market.  i shouldnt have to price my produce at organic prices.  i shouldnt have to alienate the core demographic that i was trying to reach.  i shouldnt have to change my entire price structure in order to take more money from rich people while poor people continue to struggle and go without.


so i think i am going to look at doing independent produce stands instead.  at this point i refuse to support an organization that purposefully creates an environment that divides a community.  its just not a compromise i am willing to make.


lol okay rant over...i feel a little better now :)

by on Jan. 20, 2013 at 8:59 PM
Replies (31-40):
tansyflower
by on Jan. 21, 2013 at 1:31 PM

yes it is!  its about 15 minutes further away but i would rather spend 10 extra bucks in gas and go to a market which i agree with.  my sister actually went there a few times last year and said they have about 15 vendors.  it actually made me interested in starting my own market one day in the future :)

ETA: they also are a part of the wic program so i could become a wic vendor!!!

Quoting tabi_cat1023:


Now that is awesome

Quoting tansyflower:

yeah. 

BUT i found a market just a few minutes ago that sounds really positive!  their market is limited, but its free to vendors and has no price fixing rules.  in fact he excouraged competative pricing because he feels like the market will be more successful if people come back and talk about the great deals.  its in a local grocery store parking lot too which in a way is really awesome since people are already there to buy food!  the only rules are you have to be local and you have to grow it yourself :)

Quoting Mrs.Salz:

ugh :(





PinkButterfly66
by on Jan. 21, 2013 at 2:08 PM

Sweetie..

Set up a website and put flyers in local places announcing that you will sell and deliver fresh produce by the bushel.  Google for farms that are doing it.  You bypass the Farmer's market completely and in most cases the customers will come to you to pick up their stuff.  Some places I've looked at online have set up arrangements with local health food stores as drop-offs in the parking lot, or local parks.  

thundersky
by on Jan. 21, 2013 at 3:59 PM
i wanted to do somthing simular in my comunity. my idea wasto set up a comunity garden. then people could pay for a small plot and grow the stuff they want and you can grow stuff too. it would be non for proffit so all money made would go into more comunity gardens ect.
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thundersky
by on Jan. 21, 2013 at 4:10 PM
Have you thought about going through the food banks, churches, girl scouts, boy scouts, ect. They tent to work with demographic you are trying to reach. You can also use the scouts as free labor when they need to get badges or for community service.


Quoting tansyflower:


Quoting nikzup03:

i know what you're talkinga bout, and i dont' know how that relates to what i said... have you tried also looking into ways to have community gadens and teach/help people grow food? for the most part i think farmers are afraid that everyone will find out your are selling their food for cheaper than they are at farmer's market and they will loss business, then again, you might just has asked the wrong farm this is a farmers market, not a local farm i called.  my business model is specific to non organic produce for a reason, because it affords me the ability to offer my consumables at a much cheaper price.  they wont lose business if their clients are focused on buying organic only.  those are not the people i am trying to reach.  this is a less expensive option than organic.  and not be rude but what other people charge should nnot be a conern to me.  people should have means to good food. i'm with you there, but you totally lost me with your reply. i'm not here to say you shouldn't be allowed to give away food or anything. urban gardening is becoming very popular in low-income inner city areas, many big cities have programs to help this out, i know you want to get already grown food, but i think there is a better market in teaching, it's cheaper than buying heavily processed stuff, maybe try to incorporate into you plan somehow, i'm didn't post to tell you your ideas are wrong.  i know you didnt tell me my ideas are wrong, i was just voicing my concern over this markets priceing rules and why they negatively impact the community as a whole.  we live in a small city (less than 40,000 people) and programs like wic actually give money to recipiants to spend on produce.  unfortunitely 18$ a season wont go far if they are spending 8 bucks a pound on beans.  teaching would be a wonderful idea, but many people are just not in a position to grow their own food.  apartments greatly limit ones ability to start a victory garden and patio gardens are nice, but they dont provide nearly enough food for a family to really impact access to fresh veggies.  i do have access to 10 more acres that i am hoping to turn into a community garden within the next few years, but in order to market it to people i have to meet them first.  that is where a market or veggie stand comes into play.  if you want to spread the word about access you have to meet people and let them know it exists. 

Quoting tansyflower:

i never said it wasnt easy, or that people who spend the time and energy to get certified as organic (which is EXTREMELY time consuming and expensive) shouldnt be able to charge more for their product.

i know that its going to be a lot of work, but i am seeing this business model as a community service.  the number one thing i hear when people talk about eating healthy is "i cant afford it" and you know what?  they are not lying.  they are not making excuses.  they really cant afford to spend a mortgage payments worth of money on organic and still have a roof over their head.  i understand that struggle.

what i find disturbing is that this kind of policy is purposefully neglecting an at risk population of people.  people who are at a much higher risk of heart disease and diabetes because they can only afford cheap processed food.  this markets policy is pretty much saying that they care more about profit than they do about reaching the people who need help gaining access to good food.  and i have a serious problem with that. i also have a problem with anyone telling me how much i am allowed to charge.  if i wanted to give the food away that should be my right!

if they only want rich people who can afford retail organic prices to eat good food then i wont participate and support them, plain and simple.  i believe that everyone deserves to eat well no matter who they are....and i will continue to search for affordable ways to help reach lower income families because this is an issue that i care deeply about.

Quoting nikzup03:

I don't want to sound like I don't understand high prices. But growing food and harvesting isn't easy. Farmers get the short end of The stick when is comes to making money. Industry farms and factory farms also get subsidizes and then they are owned. Local farmers have to work their butt off and barely break profit each year, then get told their prices are too high. Though I don't know why they won't let you sell the older stuff to get rid of it so people can eat it, that is odd. But grocery store food is extremely cheap. Try other farmers though.





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jconney80
by Group Mod on Jan. 21, 2013 at 9:06 PM
This is a good idea! I can't believe they do that. I bet they do that in my city as well

Quoting doulala:

What about offering Buy 2 get 1 free offers (30% off) or Buy 1 get 1 at the end of the day.       You can charge full price but let customers know they will receive something free.   ??

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jconney80
by Group Mod on Jan. 21, 2013 at 9:08 PM
I like this idea! We have several community gardens here. Everyone takes turns tending to it then everyone shares the produce

Quoting thundersky:

i wanted to do somthing simular in my comunity. my idea wasto set up a comunity garden. then people could pay for a small plot and grow the stuff they want and you can grow stuff too. it would be non for proffit so all money made would go into more comunity gardens ect.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
jconney80
by Group Mod on Jan. 21, 2013 at 9:09 PM
My stepmom used to do this

Quoting PinkButterfly66:

Sweetie..

Set up a website and put flyers in local places announcing that you will sell and deliver fresh produce by the bushel.  Google for farms that are doing it.  You bypass the Farmer's market completely and in most cases the customers will come to you to pick up their stuff.  Some places I've looked at online have set up arrangements with local health food stores as drop-offs in the parking lot, or local parks.  

Posted on CafeMom Mobile
tansyflower
by on Jan. 21, 2013 at 9:11 PM

def9intly a long term goal.  my mom has ten acres about a mile away from me.  6 are farmable and there is an artisian fed creek (that starts on my property lol) that run right through it so i have accessm to water.

i would be able to expand out once i could afford to take over the taxes for it.  i am hoping within the next few years to be able to afford the overhead and turn the whole place into a co-op :)

Quoting jconney80:

I like this idea! We have several community gardens here. Everyone takes turns tending to it then everyone shares the produce

Quoting thundersky:

i wanted to do somthing simular in my comunity. my idea wasto set up a comunity garden. then people could pay for a small plot and grow the stuff they want and you can grow stuff too. it would be non for proffit so all money made would go into more comunity gardens ect.


bosmum
by on Jan. 22, 2013 at 7:51 PM

I remember seeing a story on strawberries in Florida I think it was.  They had to water them heavily to avoid freezing and then their crop was so large they just threw them out so they would not crash the market.  So sad.  Netflix has some great shows on this kind of thing--Food Inc is one that I recall

tansyflower
by on Jan. 23, 2013 at 10:36 AM

they also do that in florida with oranges....they just dump them into the sea :/

Quoting bosmum:

I remember seeing a story on strawberries in Florida I think it was.  They had to water them heavily to avoid freezing and then their crop was so large they just threw them out so they would not crash the market.  So sad.  Netflix has some great shows on this kind of thing--Food Inc is one that I recall


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