Giving Tree Farms
Anderson Valley, CA
If there is one lesson we learned this year, it’s don’t rest on your laurels.
Although the buyers may have come knocking at the greenhouse door last year and the click rates on e-blasts remained untethered, change can come without warning. Do the impacts of an unforeseen oversaturated market, low customer spending at the retail level and pandemic-related stressors sound familiar to anyone? We’re sure we’re not the only ones who’ve had some curveballs thrown this year. Here in California, it seems like the robust market has all but come to a screeching halt.
But will we stop?
Hells no. The grit and hustle that brought us into this industry are what will ensure that we see this through.
Buyers are no longer asking for inventory lists. Most prices you quote are balked at with a response about how they can get the product somewhere else for 75% less. Quality and demand seem to have no place in the current market, which is obsessed with the lowest price. The summer harvest is not a guaranteed easy sell with higher returns. The product is sitting in the harvest storage area longer than it ever has before. The reactive sales strategy is no longer viable.
Remember that grit and hustle?
It’s how we’re getting out there and finding those buyers. When we’re not busy on the farm (as if that’s even a thing), we’re making phone calls, typing emails and flipping through the sky-high pile of trade magazines. We’ve found a new friend in LinkedIn and are doing our best to effectively work all the Zuckerberg social platforms. When the website and e-blast stats have been checked and checked again for top performers, we call friends and colleagues to see if they have heard which companies are buying.
We are all-hands-on-deck at this point in the game. Some of our harvests have been dried and some have been frozen. Thankfully we joined a cooperative, Hive Mendocino, with a group of farmer friends. We’re grateful every day that we’re not weathering this storm alone. Finding partners who have a mission and vision similar to yours is more important than ever.
Hang in there, Cali! There’s a new year and new opportunities on the horizon.