[NAFEX] Growing organically
Lon J. Rombough
lonrom at hevanet.com
Sun Apr 8 10:27:00 EDT 2007
You've just hit the biggest weakness of allowing the customer to serve
themselves. I don't know if it's still the case, but in England, the
local greengrocers always picked out the produce for the customer,
enabling them to include a few slightly dinged or very ripe fruits. It
was built into the system so the customers didn't squawk too much and
the dealer wasn't stuck with less than perfect stock.
Selling in baskets is a way to get around the problem to some degree as
some of the fruits in a basket can be less than perfect and still go if
the ones on top look good.
Not an ideal solution, but it's easier than having "produce police" or
having to require the customers to be "re-trained" each time they come
in the store.
Grapes, writing, consulting, my book, The Grape Grower, at
http://www.bunchgrapes.com Winner of the Garden Writers Association
"Best Talent in Writing" award for 2003.
For even more grape lessons, go to http://www.grapeschool.com
For growing supplies and more; http://www.grapegrowersolutions.com
On Apr 8, 2007, at 7:11 AM, Jim Fruth wrote:
I've been selling at farmers' markets for a lot of years and have
learned that most customers do not want organic produce. Oh, they will
SAY they want organic but the want it at supermarket prices. Customers
perfect produce; they handle every tomato and if they see a slightest
imperfection, they reject it. Customers also want their produce to be
same size as that which they find at supermarkets.
One time, after sorting through my displayed tomatoes, a citiot
me, "Don't you have any more BIG tomatoes?" "Why do you need big
asked. "I'm going to cut them up for a salad," was her reply.
I have watched vendors come in to sell certified organic produce and
they either stop coming because much of their produce doesn't sell or
drop their organic certification. In my opinion, "organic' will become
trend when customers stop being so fussy. What's the problem with a
pock or ding? And so long as organic producers are able to grow less
perfect fruits than their non-organic counter-parts, their organic
must, necessarily, cost more if they are to stay in business.
Pequot Lakes, MN 56472
(218)831-7018 [My Cell]
On Apr 7, 2007, at 1:09 PM, Thomas Olenio wrote:
> My underlying point being that preaching to farmers and agriculturists
> about the virtues of organic and standard agricultural practices will
> not change consumer demand one iota, and its consumer demand that
> drives commercial agricultural practice.
Preaching rarely works, on anybody. But I know organic growers who have
gradually increasing numbers of other organic farms all around them.
They don't preach; they just do a good job. Their neighbors notice the
results. Success also drives agricultural practice.
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