Reality Fine Folk

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by NWSneaky, Jun 18, 2005.

  1. NWSneaky

    NWSneaky Well-Known Member

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    Right now I have a jillion top-notch Maxim strawberries going to waste, can't find folk willing to pick them for free. In July I will have nectarines and peaches rotting. In September many, many apples will be wasted for lack of folks wanting them. BUT, I will still care for those plants and trees because it is what I like to do. It IS cheaper to buy it than to produce it.
     
  2. Wendy

    Wendy Well-Known Member

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    Where are you?? If I were close I would be there in a heartbeat to get those things!
     

  3. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I give my excess berries to a farmers marketer. She sells them and keeps half. I take back anything that doesn't sell, and I deliver to her table.

    Basically, by the end of the season I get $100 plus and she gets $100 plus. She has zero effort, except to collect the money.

    I USED to sell them myself, but I really would rather let her sit out and sell them than myself. The time I spent selling was cutting into my family and my homesteading time.

    So, I just GAVE berries away to people who sold, along with a computer-generated business card, and within days I had someone who would sell for me on consignment.
     
  4. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    Call your local food bank and make the offer to them. Put an ad in your local bulletin board paper. Sign up for freecycle and offer it there.
     
  5. ponyexpress

    ponyexpress Well-Known Member

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    Isn't there an organization called "gleaners" (or something similar) that will come and pick produce? It's mostly elderly people and other volunteers who "glean" produce from the fields and donate it to nursing homes and soup kitchens. It might be worth looking into for you.
    I wish you were closer! My mom, cousins, and a few girl friends would love to have some fruit! And we'd be glad to barter or pay for it too!
     
  6. Kygardengal

    Kygardengal Well-Known Member

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    Several years ago, I had a bumper crop for beautiful green beans. Took a bushel
    to the local soup kitchen and they "rufused" them :eek: Because it takes too long to cook! ! I then went to 4 different nursing homes and no one would take them for the same reason. I couldn't find anyone to take them for free. A lot of people don't even know how to cook them. They did take some extra cucumbers
    lettuces and tomatoes though, but not too many, because people here don't eat too much fresh stuff. The world just amazes me at times... :no: Last year I put a basket of stuff outside the door of our church for anyone who would want any of it(after services) and took it home still full.....Sad..Sad..Sad..I have a friend who has had the same problem and she put an ad in the paper for free produce and did give her extra away. Here, the ad is free if the item is free..
     
  7. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    i know exactly what you mean!!! people say they want the extras from my garden, but they want me to pick it, me to bring it to them, then all too often they let it lay and ruin because they either don't take the time, or don't know how, to cook/ can it. maybe if i canned all the stuff for them they might use it. :rolleyes: most of the time, i just let the stuff ruin, and save myself the time.

    however, i did have a friend who nailed a basket to a post near the road, with a sign that said "free produce, help yourself" and most days the stuff would disappear. not sure if i have enough traffic on this road to do that.
     
  8. Kygardengal

    Kygardengal Well-Known Member

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    Marvella, don't bother caning it.. :haha: ...I have offered canned stuff to friends and they have turned it down, because "I" canned it and afterall, it might not be safe to eat... :grump: I guess they want me to give it to them already "cooked"....I went to a "you pick" farm for strawberries a few weeks back and the owner told me that over 1/2 of that 5 acre field would rot because
    no one would pick... :no: I picked all afternoon...People would come....pick maybe a quart, pay the guy, then leave....I was the only one who picked to amount to anything.....sad I say....really sad....
     
  9. mama2littleman

    mama2littleman El Paso

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    NWSneaky,

    If I were near to you, I'd be over in a heartbeat to pick those fruits and berries. Heck i'd even give you some og the jams and preserves I'd make from them as a thank you for your kindness. But unfortunately, I'm in Texas.

    I think the problem is that people just don't know what to do with ingredients anymore. If it doesn't come in a box or bag with preprinted instructions they have no idea how to use it.

    Nikki
     
  10. sisterpine

    sisterpine Goshen Farm Supporter

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    It simply amazes me and shows what this world of ours has come too! I sell fresh organic large brown eggs to several friends and aquaintences around here. Sell them cheap too 1.50 per doz just to help with feed expenses. There is one guy, George (retired cop just like me from same big city dept) who is totally freaked by the thought of eating a fresh chicken egg! He alone goes through over a dozen store bought eggs a week and his wife has taken a doz of mine home to try cause she heard "they are better for you". But George made her stop and put them in the GARBAGE at a service station on the way home! The Georges of the world dont mind eating eggs that are months old, or that have come from chickens who are treated with an amazing amount of chemical and hormonal stuff who are kept in a tiny cage with no free movement! Georges, like this, dont mind eating 20 % mystery juice meat from wally world or produce which has sat in a can for years at a time! What is it with folks, George for instance is afraid to get dirty so I suspect he thinks there are more germs on my farm than there are in the isle at wally world. Boy is he wrong LOL
     
  11. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    When my chicken started laying eggs my city boy hubby told me to tell him if it was a homegrown egg before I served it. When I asked him why, he said he was afraid he might not like it cause it would taste funny. :rolleyes: He got over that real fast and I haven't bought eggs at the grocery store since she started laying.

    It makes me sick to think of all that stuff going to waste.
     
  12. Lisa A

    Lisa A Well-Known Member

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    We don't have a huge surplus yet (how I envy all that fruit!) but what we
    do have the goats and chickens clean right up - I know a lot of people get
    upset if there's a slug or earwig in the vegetables so hesitate to offer, though
    everyone will take tomatoes :)
     
  13. countrygrrrl

    countrygrrrl PITA

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    One word: compost. :yeeha:

    What doesn't get eaten and doesn't get frozen goes into the composter.

    Mwalla! Dirt. :yeeha:
     
  14. Sparkey

    Sparkey Well-Known Member

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    A guy I get organic brown eggs from dropped his price to .80 cents/doz just to get rid of what his chickens were producing. I offered fresh romaine, bibb, and mesclun to 3 people yesterday...free... I got 2 "no thanks" and 1 " no, I'd probably just let it rot".
    People go nuts about the cost of 'health care' when what they really mean is the cost of Dr.'s, hospitals, and prescription drugs. IMO true health care begins with the individual consuming proper healthy food, not processed, junk food, and soda.
    Good healthy food is not an expense, it's an investment.
     
  15. QBVII

    QBVII Well-Known Member

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    Most people are "too busy" to actually cook a meal.
    And cleaning vegetables?
    Ha!

    If you can't *pop* it into the microwave for exactly .45 seconds and presto it's done; it's too much trouble!


    :haha:
     
  16. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    amen brothers and sisters!!!! you are preachin' to the choir!! :haha:

    i give away eggs at work, and most people turn their nose up at them.
     
  17. ajaxlucy

    ajaxlucy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I wish I lived near you! I went to a nearby U-pick for 30 lbs of strawberries, and I'll go back when the raspberries are in season, but they don't have peaches or nectarines. I won't buy them in the supermarket but I love them when they're really fresh and ripe.

    Over the years, we've developed a following for fresh eggs, so we're lucky that way. A few people no longer buy from us because their kids were too weirded out by brown eggs, but most of our customers seem to prefer brown. It rarely happens, but if we have any extra eggs, I can take them to the food pantry where I volunteer. If the clients there don't want them, the other volunteers usually do.

    There's an organic farmer's market that started up around here and they've been selling out of fresh eggs recently, at $2.50 - $3/dozen
     
  18. Madame

    Madame Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Where are you? If it's Michigan or Wisconsin, I'm on my way!
     
  19. Madame

    Madame Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Where are you? If it's Michigan or Wisconsin, I'm on my way!
     
  20. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Maybe you need to rethink your marketing approach. Terri's idea of selling them wholesale to a person who has a stand/booth is one thing you can do. Go to a couple of farmer's markets or other outlets where someone is selling fresh produce and talk to them. When people won't take from Ma Kettle they will buy from a "real" store.

    If you are able, you could get an assumed name and a sign, offering U-pick. The proper ad with good directions will get you customers. I imagine you could also sell jam to these customers. I always like to pick my own, but I know many people who pay extra for the prepicked berries. Fruit seasons are usually short, so if you find you don't like having the public come to your place, you will be through with them quickly enough.