Farmer's Market Sales

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ClinchValley86

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I've decided that I need to get my product in front of people who are actively trying to spend their money.

Farmers markets or on the side of the road in populated areas. Thinking every week, maybe every other week.He'll, might need to do it a couple times a week.

Deep freezer in truck bed running off a power inverter...this sound appropriate and reliable/trustworthy?

Do any of yall do this sort of thing? Any best practices? Advice? Pro/con? Let me have it.

I'd love to move 1000+ pounds of ground beef per month, every month.

Getting some professional signs made that are visible from afar. 2.5x4 foot signs or something comparable.
 

SBMF 2015

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If your only going to sell ground beef it sounds feasible.

Have friends who used to do the farmers market scene when they still raised hogs. They took orders for halves. Had a pick up date and would have a chest freezer in the back of their S-10. People would pick up there meat a couple weeks after they had ordered.
People picking up their order would draw the attention of other people walking past. Add a couple signs and it's almost self advertising.
 

Dave

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I have 3 friends who have done the farmers market thing. 2 with beef and one with chicken. All three have branched out to more direct sales as a result of the farmers market.
 

Ky hills

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Farmers Markets can be a good option but it depends a lot on location, clientele, and the people in the market itself.
We were a part of our local farmers market for a couple years selling produce and eggs. There were a few meat vendors, and to my understanding they have done well. I was told by one that they sell more pork at our location than they did beef. There was also a vendor that only sold beef. A couple of them actually brought stoves and prepared sausage biscuits, and goat bratwursts, etc. on-site.
As long as the meat was processed in a USDA facility vendors here are allowed to sell the meat by the cut, at certified farmers markets or roadside markets.
Our farmers market itself had internal politics and jealousy and the competition was much fiercer than it should have been. A lot vendors and customers alike have been turned off by it, hopefully they aren’t all like that. From what I understand our local farmers market only has a few produce vendors as most were turned off by the nonsense.
 

sstterry

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Here are the Tennessee Guidelines. But the meat has to be processed at a USDA facility. And, you have to pay a licensing fee.

FARM-BASED RETAIL MEAT SALES GUIDELINES

I am not sure that the Morristown Farmers will allow it, but you can check. I know they will not allow home-canned green beans to be sold because that is considered a "processed food".
 

Hogfarmer10

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I did it for years. Beef, pork, and lamb. Agree with licenses and permits as mentioned. Yes, a truck powered inverter is actually a requirement. I was fortunate that the market I sold at had electricity for the vendors, otherwise 3 freezers and 2 small refrigerators would have killed the truck batteries in no time. Stick to just the basics. I got to the point that I was basically a meat market with so many different cuts of meat. Also, it sounds silly, but learn a few recipes. #1. If you suggest a recipe that they’re not familiar with, they’re very likely to try it. #2. You’d be amazed at how many people do not know how to cook!
I will say this as a warning however. In the past, when the economy was in similar shape, people viewed the farmers market meats, as well as some fruits and decorations (pumpkins), as more of a novelty or a “treat”. You’d still sell some, but sales were definitely down. Also, it is incredibly difficult to sell a whole beef in a short time, especially 1or 2 packs at a time. And people do pay attention to the “packed on” dates on the labeling. Not trying to discourage you at all, just sharing experiences. Good luck
 

Ky hills

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Here are the Tennessee Guidelines. But the meat has to be processed at a USDA facility. And, you have to pay a licensing fee.

FARM-BASED RETAIL MEAT SALES GUIDELINES

I am not sure that the Morristown Farmers will allow it, but you can check. I know they will not allow home-canned green beans to be sold because that is considered a "processed food".
In Ky if it is a state certified farmers market, and the vendor has taken a course in home based processing or micro processing ( wife did) then you can sell some canned products. We could sell, canned green beans, pickles, but not tomatoes.
 

sstterry

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In Ky if it is a state certified farmers market, and the vendor has taken a course in home based processing or micro processing ( wife did) then you can sell some canned products. We could sell, canned green beans, pickles, but not tomatoes.
There was a big to-do a couple of years ago with the one here (ClinchValley lives close). They won't even let them sell pre-broken green beans as I recall.
 

Ky hills

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There was a big to-do a couple of years ago with the one here (ClinchValley lives close). They won't even let them sell pre-broken green beans as I recall.
There’s a lot of do’s and don’t’s with farmers markets. Some of it makes sense and some of it seems to be a stretch.
I’m sure we couldn’t have sold pre-broken green beans either. If you offered samples of anything you had to have a sanitizing station, which could be a cooler with a free flowing spigot that could be opened and closed and soap. This was well before the corona stuff.
We didn’t get into that part of it.
 

Hogfarmer10

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That’s similar to TN. They offer a course here as well. I believe they’ve gotten it broken down so that you can sell so many quarts/pints etc, after that it has to be processed in a commercial kitchen (often, church kitchens are considered commercial). The issue with canned tomatoes is something to do with the acid. Easiest way to do samples is to prepare them, then put the samples into a Tupperware type container with lid, and provide toothpicks. Then allow the customers to serve themselves. Under no circumstances, do you hand them anything to eat, even if wearing gloves.
 

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