local farmers markets

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13 years 7 months ago #24279 by Jeffie
local farmers markets was created by Jeffie
Anyone on this site selling produce at their local farmers market?

I'm tempted to join our local one which is in Whakatane but I'm not sure if it will be worthwhile after you pay the weekly fee of $18. I have big space here to grow veggies etc but I'm not sure if I have enough for a farmers market. I could sell eggs too.

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13 years 7 months ago #343384 by Seaside
Replied by Seaside on topic local farmers markets
Hi Jeffie

I had a stall for quite a few weeks at Christchurch farmers' market this last summer/autumn plus a couple of times at Oxford the year before.

Is it worthwhile? That's the million dollar (or $18) question.

It took me about two hours to prepare the night before/morning of the farmers' market. Six hours on the day allowing for travel. Thus 8 hours per week.

The most money I ever took (the week before Christmas when I was in a good spot) was $196 gross. The least would have been $60.

At ChCh, the stall fee is $40, so when I took $60, that was $20 after the stall fee. Not including the cost of production (especially as with some of my products I pay for the jars, vinegar and other ingredients, bags, cold smoker and sawdust, and the seeds, seed cells, growing medium, tunnel house and irrigation in the first pace), nor including the cost of petrol, and particularly not including anything for my time.

However, that was just me. There were other stalls doing a roaring trade. The thing with farmer's markets is that it takes a while to become established, so that people seek you out. Secondly, if you're not doing anything else and if you can cover your basic costs, it's worthwhile by the fact you are meeting customers and establishing a customer base.

As a way to get rich.... not likely, sorry.

Kids, beasts, and chillies in Swannanoa South.
www.farmaway.co.nz

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13 years 7 months ago #343405 by Jeffie
Replied by Jeffie on topic local farmers markets
Hi Seaside,
Hmm, see that is what I'm worried about. Definitely not going to get rich out of it all[;)]

Spending the time and effort and only just walking away with a few dollars. I figured if I grow a few things here as I have a bit of space and make a bit of money out of that as a sideline it would be good.

I certainly not wanting to spend hours and hours preparing, travelling cost etc and just cover stall costs.

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13 years 7 months ago #343410 by Seaside
Replied by Seaside on topic local farmers markets
I think it depends what you want out of it. Fresh veg and fruit are less of a risk of making a financial loss than processed goods because the money you spend producing is less (ie no need to buy jars, pay for a licenced kitchen, pay for ingredients, labelling, and so on).

Having said that, I am sure that some sellers probably make hundreds of dollars most weeks - you have to have the quantity and keep showing up each week to get to that point.

Some people do it more for the sense of community, a way to get out of the house and meet people, sell their excess veg rather than waste it, and a bit of pocket money. If you only make $20, then that's a good bottle of wine. There is a good cameraderie between stall holders and many do 'swaps' at the end of the day with produce.

It is a bit of an effort, especially if you're working full-time during the week, and there's start up costs (a folding table and table cloth at least), but having said that, I plan to carry on this year, I'll just go to Oxford which is nearer and the stall fee is lower, and is really quite thriving these days.

People quite like the weird and wonderful - I sold about 20 horned melons in one morning last autumn! They also like the heritage varieties of tomatoes, etc. I've had people come up and buy something they don't really want or need (like a bag of gherkins), just because they believe in supporting their local growers, which gave me a nice buzz.

Kids, beasts, and chillies in Swannanoa South.
www.farmaway.co.nz

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13 years 7 months ago #343414 by SarahM
Replied by SarahM on topic local farmers markets
Do you live on a main road there Jeffie? There's a man near here makes a thriving trade out of a vege stall right outside his house. It's been so successful that he's set up a shop in town and the business is thriving.

Helps if you have that roadside frontage though.

Another thing I have thought of when selling eggs etc, is always put a sticker or business card with it, with address/phone details etc - then you can get return customers. After a while you could build up such a good client base that you don't need to go to a stall.

5 acres, husband, daughter, son, me, about 12 sheep and their lambs, currently no ram (yay!), 2 Galloways, about 35 chooks, 3 cats and 2 budgies.

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13 years 7 months ago #343417 by blimeyvicki
Replied by blimeyvicki on topic local farmers markets
Is it worthwhile trying to sell a weekly box of produce to other parents at school or something?? Including fruit/veg/eggs and maybe some flowers?? I was hoping to be able to do that rather than the farmers market as, like Seaside said, I think it is a big effort for little return at the markets.
Does anybody else do that?

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13 years 7 months ago #343432 by Organix
Replied by Organix on topic local farmers markets
Why not try www.locavore365.org ? Good way to link with both customers and other small scale producers in your area :D

Harm Less Solutions.co.nz
NZ & AU distributor of Eco Wood Treatment stains and Bambu Dru bamboo fabrics and clothing

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13 years 7 months ago #343434 by PalmyCol
Replied by PalmyCol on topic local farmers markets
Perhaps you could run the stall once or twice and give your customers your email address or phone number and then just deal with them direct after that once you have a few people keen to buy what you have to sell. You could send out an email to them with what you have for sale next week etc...


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13 years 7 months ago #343436 by Country Girl
Replied by Country Girl on topic local farmers markets
Jeffie - do you work off the LB? There is a lady at my work who sells free range eggs and they always include two or three Aracauna (sp) eggs in the dozen and some pinky eggs so it is very tempting to have such a myriad of colour and she cannot keep up with demand - I asked her if I could have another dozen and her next three dozen were prebooked[:0] She is not upping her hens so we just have to wait and we will they are the best eggs ever! :D . So starting through work etc may be a good way then word of mouth seems to take over. We pay $5 for the dozen.
Good luck

A pessimist is never disappointed

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13 years 7 months ago #343447 by Stu_R
Replied by Stu_R on topic local farmers markets
:) CG $5 a dozen would be well worth it to for eggs you know are fresh and where they are from :)

5 retired Greyhounds ( Bridgette , Lilly, GoGo,Sam and now Lenny) 15 friendly sheep all of whom are named and come when you call them :) , 2 goats, Mollie and Eee Bee :
Olive trees , .. old bugger doing the best he can with no money or land :)

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13 years 7 months ago #343473 by Ghilly
Replied by Ghilly on topic local farmers markets
The local market in Pokeno has at least three vegetable stalls, we have bought a bag of carrots, a cabbage, a bag of parsnips and a swede and I think some broccoli for $6:50.
Think of what that would have cost in the supermarket..... so we buy our vegetables from the market.

I don't think any of the vegetable sellers there actually grow their own but get it from the main market, or whatever it's called. BUT it's much cheaper for us.

I think it all comes down to appearance of the produce. If your vegetables look fresh and clean and not wilted and tired, then you will appeal to the public. Would you pick a tired floppy looking head of broccoli over one that is looking like it has just that minute been picked from the garden?

I think with processed things like jam and preserves, people like to try before they buy which is not always practical to the seller.
With the economy the way it is, you have to weigh up whether someone will buy a jar of something worth say, $5 that they have never tasted, or buy something from the supermarket that they have had before which may be cheaper as well..... It may be just sugary rubbish with a hint of flavour but unless they know your jam or preserve is going to blow the shop bought stuff out of the water as far as taste goes, you may find it harder to shift.

The Anglo Nubian Breed Society has a goats cheese tasting stall at places like the LSB expo and people are really quite keen to try some, even though the ANBSNZ can't sell the cheese (MAF regulations or something). If people had to buy it before trying it, there would be a lot less people out there tasting it. Fresh goats milk is also available for tasting and once again, people can't buy it but are willing to put any prejudice aside and try it. Most are pleasantly surprised. If it were legal to sell it, the society would make quite a bit of money, I am sure!

I think, with things like fruit, if you could have small samples available for people to try, they would be more willing to buy. A little offering of small bits of apple, say, on a plate, people can try it. How many times have you seen some fab looking apples in the supermarket and bought a few, only to find they're all floury or just tasteless. The way to a buyers money is through their tastebuds LOL!

Yakut

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13 years 7 months ago #343500 by pataka
Replied by pataka on topic local farmers markets
I think you should give it a go - we have had a stall a few times at the Whakatane Farmers Market and its a great way to spend a few hours - Dave McMeeking used to do the musical entertainment and he was excellent - not sure if he will be doing it again this year. Have to admit we weren't doing it seriously...we just took along some excess from the garden and usually caught up with a few people we hadn't seen for ages and spent most of our profit on what other stall holders were selling!! But I think its really important to support local communities with this kind of thing - so if you do go - let me know and I will come and buy some of whatever you end up selling!!

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13 years 7 months ago #343657 by steve1983
Replied by steve1983 on topic local farmers markets
Hi,
I believe the best way to atract people to your stall is to offer them the chance to try before they buy. BIG SIGN! FREE SAMPLES!
Cook up the eggs, have a bit of chutney on a cracker etc. They can see what you produce is like quality wise. Sure it may cost you some money to start with but stir up some interest you might sell a couple of jars, or doz eggs.
Get some stickers made up cheap - heaps of places on the internet (I got 1000 stickers for $6) with your details on it and plaster it over your produce so you go direct like someone mentioned.

Got to have some risk involved-
I have a business that started with $137.68c when I built my first chicken coop. I have sold over one hundred of those and many other products.
Go on give it a go!!!

Steve Brown Rural Contracting LTD
Fencing Contractor in Canterbury
FCANZ Member

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13 years 7 months ago #343722 by Stu_R
Replied by Stu_R on topic local farmers markets
Just came back in to town from the Olive grove at Awahuri
:) i see the LSB ( with goats,Dexters, sheep ) now has a stall at their front gate selling Eggs , and there were 4 cars there and people getting egss :) ... so maybe worth a try at that Jeffie :)

5 retired Greyhounds ( Bridgette , Lilly, GoGo,Sam and now Lenny) 15 friendly sheep all of whom are named and come when you call them :) , 2 goats, Mollie and Eee Bee :
Olive trees , .. old bugger doing the best he can with no money or land :)

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13 years 7 months ago #343815 by Toast
Replied by Toast on topic local farmers markets
Jams & chutneys - if the fruit or veg is roughly chopped and therefore recognisable through the glass of the jar, it will sell like hot cakes, provided price isn't exhorbitant. I will certainly buy on sight if it looks as if the jar is full of the real McCoy because I know it's way better than the supermarket. Also, I know I'll use less than the supermarket stuff & so it's value for money. If it's from an unusual fruit/veg or an unusual combination, I would want to try before I buy.

Good luck!

[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]Toast is the best food in the world
Whisky is the best drink in the world

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