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selling beef at local farmer markets

Barrett

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hello all I'm new here but have been reading posts for the past three months or so. All the info here is great and has helped me towards my new venture.
Long story short I have now been approved to be a vendor at 2 new farmer markets in my area this spring to sell natural beef and chevon. I currently own no cattle or goats but have a good deal worked out with another farmer that has sold at farmer markets the past 4 years. This year to help me get started I will market under their label and buy finshed steers from them. We will weigh the steers at the farm and I will pay for the live weight then(not sure what the price per # will be). My question is what price per # should I expect to pay or what is a fair price? Steers weigh between 900 to 1000 pounds, are roughly 17 months old, pature based, alittle grain supplemented and angus sired.

Any thoughts or comments
Thanks
Barrett
 

SRBeef

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Barrett":1e24a30v said:
hello all I'm new here but have been reading posts for the past three months or so. All the info here is great and has helped me towards my new venture.
Long story short I have now been approved to be a vendor at 2 new farmer markets in my area this spring to sell natural beef and chevon. I currently own no cattle or goats but have a good deal worked out with another farmer that has sold at farmer markets the past 4 years. This year to help me get started I will market under their label and buy finshed steers from them. We will weigh the steers at the farm and I will pay for the live weight then(not sure what the price per # will be). My question is what price per # should I expect to pay or what is a fair price? Steers weigh between 900 to 1000 pounds, are roughly 17 months old, pature based, alittle grain supplemented and angus sired.

Any thoughts or comments
Thanks
Barrett

I'd suggest you look at some local sale barn prices, those are in $/hundred weight and based on the live weight and then maybe add a little based on knowing more about these steers. Otherwise you can buy fats at the livestock market. I hope you don't rush in too fast and overestimate how much you can sell at farmers markets. That can be a tough market to break into and to make it cash flow. Best of luck to you.

You are a new poster and it would make it easier to understand your posts if you put a bit of location information in your bio in the upper rh corner. Doesn't need to be exact, maybe just a state?
 

hayray

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In my area there are a lot of rural outlets for farm produce right off the farm and most people go to the small town farmers markets to buy other products other then meat, it does not seem to sell as well as baked products, crafts, flowers, and veg. produce. I have heard that at the big city markets like in New York City people are more accustomed to going to daily markets and buying a regular food supply so beef sells a lot better. You could loose a lot of money buying live weight. You would be better off buying processed from a producer who is already getting it processed and then that way you could buy the cuts and quantity that you need. If you buy a whole carcass you will have a lot of high value cuts get sold first and then be left with low value cuts and a farmers market is a really slow way to move beef but if you have a customer base established elsewhere it may work because you can package beef in mini packages of variety cuts. I direct market all of my beef and if I thought I could make money at markets I would be there all the time but from what I have seen it is really low volume. However, you may have a better opportunity being the triangel area next to that large population.
 

badaxemoo

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I don't mean to be critical of your plans, but I think you are going to get some confused customers.

Unless farmer's markets in your part of the country work differently than they do where I live, it is typically the farmer that produces the meat (or fruit, vegetable, etc) sitting at the table selling it to the customer. In fact in many markets it is a rule that this is the case.

People generally go to farmer's markets to get local food and to buy directly from the farmer.

When people ask questions about the beef you are selling, will they be confident in your knowledge of how it was produced, given the fact that someone else raised the animal?

I wish you well, but I can tell you from my somewhat limited experience that I would not be able to sell my beef and pork at the prices I do (a lot higher than the grocery store - but less than the natural food co-op) if I bought the meat from somewhere else and was just selling it.
 

Bluestem

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I agree with badaxemoo. You don't have a story. You did not raise the product. You cannot say for sure what the animal was fed or how it was medicated. It doesn't sound like you have a unique product. I do not know your market. I would proceed with caution. You could lose your shirt in my market.
 

Barrett

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Excuse me I guess I should have said I will be working for another farmer, selling his beef and goat meat at the market for him. My pay for working will be determined by the profit margin after all cost are figured. He currently sells at another market in the area an has for the past 4 years. I was just wondering what should be a good price range for the steers.

Thanks for for the replys
 

hayray

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Barrett":3snc9eo1 said:
Excuse me I guess I should have said I will be working for another farmer, selling his beef and goat meat at the market for him. My pay for working will be determined by the profit margin after all cost are figured. He currently sells at another market in the area an has for the past 4 years. I was just wondering what should be a good price range for the steers.

Thanks for for the replys
If you are working with another farmer then I would sell on some sort of a commison basis, that is what I have done in the past with some other local producers that attend the market with other products they raise, they will sometimes sell my beef with my label on it. I do have a website and I advertise in the local paper. Just got done delivering a quarter of beef 50 miles away because they found my website.
 

hayray

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thanks for the compliments. I don't have that many credit card payments on line but enough to make it worth it. Having the merchant account is good though because I actually get more cedit card payments in person and I also can sell hay on credit card by running the hay sale through my beef business merchant account.
 

wade

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I would say your doing pretty well if your moving any beef for the prices listed. Good for you. I live in Northern Michigan and I try to sell finished beef and pork. I work with a local processer doing the killing and butchering. I have a steer that is finished now (grain finished) that will hang between 700-800 lbs. and I am having a difficult time selling any of it. I get 1.35 for hogs and 2.00 for cattle, hanging weight on the rail. There are a couple operations around here that I am positive go to the salelbarns and buy live cattle and hogs and take to their facilities and butcher and sell to the public. I cannot compete with these people when they can pick up hogs at the sale for 50 dollars per hundred weight.
 

dieselbeef

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fair price delivered...i get 3lb cut and wrapped hangin and you come get it. i sell by the halfs only. nice job. i think yer still selling cheap. round here some sellers are gettin twice that for ahmburger and cant keep it...i dont market my animals anymore. i sell all of em as meat
 

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