[NAFEX] Selling fruit

dmnorton at royaloakfarmorchard.com dmnorton at royaloakfarmorchard.com
Sat May 24 13:53:16 EDT 2008


We have been selling fruit to the public since 1997 and last season sold over $300,000.00 of fruit through direct retail, U-Pick, wholesale to other orchards and farmer's markets.

We sell apples, peaches, pumpkins and various other crops, as well as our honey from the 50 hives we keep in the orchard.  We have the greatest bees, they always pay for themselves.  Last season they produced over 5,000 pounds of honey and we sold most of it.  We private label the honey as well as our apple bags and apple cider donut cartons.

We have not sold directly to grocers or restaurants, although this season we have hired a sales person to market to restaurants and local grocers.  Wholesale sales are not very profitable, but we always have apples left at the end of the season and with the additional 5,000 trees we have planted over the past 3 years, we need an outlet for some of the left over apples.  In the past we have given them away to food pantries, and will always continue to do that, but with the price of fuel going up, we want to offset those costs through the wholesale route so we don't have to increase our prices very much.

I'd be happy to discuss selling fruit with you in-depth off list anytime.
Dennis Norton
Royal Oak Farm Orchard, Zone 5
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Mark & Helen Angermayer 
  To: North American Fruit Explorers 
  Sent: Saturday, May 24, 2008 10:30 AM
  Subject: [NAFEX] Selling fruit

  Hi Folks,

  I'm getting more interested in selling fruit.  I'd be interested to know how many of you out there sell fruit?  What kinds of fruit do you sell?  How do you market it (U-Pick, wholesale, grocery stores)?  What quantity?  What's been your single greatest challenge?  If you tried selling fruit for a while and couldn't make it work, why not?  What are some of the pitfalls to avoid?  Any other comments you can think of would be appreciated.

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