The New Pioneer. Would you want to?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by jucal, Jul 1, 2005.

  1. jucal

    jucal Well-Known Member

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    I just want some input on an idea that I have. I have a small dairy that we milk and sell raw milk and raw milk cheeses. We milk Jersey cows and Nubian goats. I have had so many people (mostly women) ask me if they can come and watch us do the milking and cheese making and everything else it takes to run a small dairy. These people are very interested in starting something just like what we are doing. I was thinking of having a workshop for all that is interested. That means getting up at 4:30 in the morning to do the chores milking and feeding the animals. They would also have to muck out stalls if needed. Maybe even learn how to butcher a chicken or two and cook it for their lunch. Have a question and answer session all day long. Maybe have some other women show some of the things that they are good at and would like to teach others. We would do all the chores again in the evening. Thought if some would like they could bring a tent and come the evening before. Maybe all would have to bring a covered dish of some sort for their lunch for all to share. Maybe charge a small amount to cover the expense that I would have for any thing that I would need to have such as renting a porta pot depending on how many would be interested in attending. What are your thoughts on this. Any ideas would be appreciated. I think it could be a fun day but I also want to show that running a small dairy is hard work and it is not always so much fun. Men would be welcome also.
    Thanks,
    Judy
    www.oklahomarawmilk.homestead.com
     
  2. Mid Tn Mama

    Mid Tn Mama Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Do it! And charge a little more than fees--your time is worth something. Also, do you have other farm products/animals to sell--be sure to display and list prices on a sign. Make a video and sell on the internet to those who can't make that far. (or that day). I think it's a great idea.
     

  3. Morriagiolla

    Morriagiolla Well-Known Member

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    well....you might just do it on certian DATES that way people dont come all the time....so you dont feel like your living in a FISH blow....

    other than that....are you where you could just set up a good OUTHOUSE....lol....that would give them quiet the pioneer feeling....hee,hee.
     
  4. Donovan K

    Donovan K Well-Known Member

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    I have had so many people (mostly women) ask me if they can come and watch us do the milking and cheese making and everything else it takes to run a small dairy. These people are very interested in starting something just like what we are doing.

    Why would you teach someone else to go into business against you?


    Just wondering. If you have more business than you can handle, fine. but do you really want the daily competition from the measley money you will get from a one time seminar fee?

    Donovan
     
  5. jucal

    jucal Well-Known Member

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    Donovan, I asked myself the same question. These are not people that want to set up shop just down the road from me. I have loyal customers that come here because they know they will get a quality product for a fair price. In fact when I don't have enough eggs to sell I tell my customers that their is someone right down the road that sells theirs for even less than I do. Some will buy their eggs from them but most will just wait until I have more. My customers can get Jersey milk, goat milk, cream, butter, eggs, raw honey, yogurt, kefir, and probably 10 different kinds of cheese when they come here. They don't have to go several different places to get quality products. My customers like it that I know their names their kids names, where they live, what they do for a living, and they always get a smile and a little conversation when they come to the farm. They don't mind driving up to and over 40 miles one way to come to the farm. I don't plan to make big bucks to give the workshop on the contrary I don't care if I make anything at all at this point. Money is not everything and being a good neighbor is. Yes at times I can not supply everthing that everybody wants. I am 55 years old and there needs to be more people like me that what to work hard and provide the public what I supply for them now. I have always encouraged young people to do it if they are up to it, but they need to know what all is involved. I tell potential farmers that it is hard work and there is no vacation and when you don't feel well you still have to get up and take care of the animals. I would rather show them that it is not all about selling but about the animals and you must love animals to do it. I would hate for some animals to be abused or neglected just because someone wants to make money off of them.
    Judy
    www.oklahomarawmilk.homestead.com
     
  6. almostthere

    almostthere Well-Known Member

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    yes charge more than fees. This would be a great homestead business. But remember theres paperwork involved, paying your taxes, insurance, gathering materials for your students. Will they be taking home samples? Will you be going in depth of what all is involved? HAving them provide thier own housing is a great idea. If you have the right codes you could install an outhouse instead of renting one. This is a great idea, I'm sure you can make it work.
     
  7. hollym

    hollym Well-Known Member

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    I think it's a super idea. I had already had a private laugh about your start time of 4:30 am, lol, that ought to show the ones that aren't serious right away that it is not an easy thing to do! But it sounds really interesting, and it would be useful to people that didn't know. I had to figure out how to milk a goat from a book, years ago and it took me some time to get reasonably competent at it!

    Your place is great, I really enjoyed photo touring it.

    Good luck to you and your enterprise!

    hollym
     
  8. diane greene

    diane greene Well-Known Member

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    This place offers just what you describe: www.sproutcreekfarm.org/
    I would not worry about the competition. If is was easy many people would be doing it.
    Buying land, animals and equipment is big bucks. I didn't know it was legal to sell raw milk in some states.
     
  9. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    You would be providing a very valuable service.You can and should price it to make a profit too.
    I hope you can do it,sounds so good to me.

    BooBoo
     
  10. buspete

    buspete Well-Known Member

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    I don't know how populated your area is, but in the right area I think people would flock to it.

    It's kind of like Tom Sawyer charging other kids a quarter to paint the fence, if you tell people they are having fun and learning stuff, they won't even notice they are doing all of your chores either!

    I've got more than one friend who can't wait to come pluck chickens at butchering time just because he wants to experience it. Maybe I should convince them how enlightening an experience it would be to paint my living room...
     
  11. Kygardengal

    Kygardengal Well-Known Member

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    If you were close by I would definately be interested. I went to a local dairy and offered to help out just for the experience but the guy said he didn't need
    any help...guess he just didn't want me around...I have milked before, but would still like to see it all.
     
  12. jucal

    jucal Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for all the encouragement. I would plan on doing this only a couple of times a year. In the spring and in the fall. I am shooting for this September for the first one.
    Judy
    www.oklahomarawmilk.homestead.com
     
  13. Caitedid

    Caitedid The Prairie Plate Supporter

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    The farm I worked at last year ahd women paying to come do lambing. Never in my life seen people that excited to get up at 2 AM to go stand in a cold barn, and walk pastures in the snow. Oh well, whatever floats your boat I guess:)