Monday, February 11, 2013
This is a question that everyone trying to export their products comes up against. How do I find buyers for my product? I am currently involved in a small project whose sole purpose is to find buyers. The product is blueberries, the place is Florida and the buyers could be anywhere.
A quick background on this search is required. Most the blueberry farmers in my area, north Florida, are not too keen to find buyers for their entire crops. Many utilize the u-pick method, basically a real simple cash transaction. Others decide to take their crops to market, Farmer’s markets that is, and directly sell to customers. Both of these methods are profitable with many farmers making a decent living (I recently had an interview with a farmer who claimed $175,000 yearly net profits on using a combination of both of these methods) However if you don’t want random people walking through your farm, or prefer to do something else on your weekends (most Farmer’s Market convene on Saturdays) then how can you find a buyer?
Well like all market research, it’s a process. I first started by looking at the USDA Market News (http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/marketnews) this at least gave me an idea of what cities in my area are offering decent prices for the crop. Since it’s currently off-season I looked through a lot of the archived news. I quickly centered in one city, Plant City, FL and one particular marketer, Wish Farms (http://www.wishfarms.com/how-we-grow/growers/). Now like in every research, finding one answer usually leads to more questions….