Boots On The Ground – The Logan Square Farmers Market, May 28, 2017

Sunday I took a trip to the Logan Square farmers market to do some boots-on-the-ground intel to see what is selling, what is offered, and what vendors are here at the early part of the year.  It was a fruitful trip.

 

Lessons learned:

  • Summary: microgreens are a good short-term offering with a good return on investment that can be discontinued on short notice
  • Putting thought into the display and sharing the story of your operation is as much a marketing tool as the product that you sell
  • There is affordable prepared food
  • There is expensive prepared food
  • Prices for vegetables are pretty much priced the same as they are across he nation ($3 per serving, 2 for $5)
  • Lots of greens, fast-growers (radishes, beets) and surprisingly, root vegetables
  • Expect crowds

Be well, everyone.


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Some general snapshots I got of the market​


The one stall I realized I did not get pictures of was a two-man stall selling microgreens (and wheat grass shots.)  They were selling them by the ounce, and they had their growing trays on display, cutting directly from the tray as product was needed.  I didn’t engage in conversation, and got the sense that the $3.00 I paid for my ounce of sunflower greens covered the cost (or perhaps half) of the seeds that the tray required.  If they get 15 ounces per tray, that’s 7-14 times profit, not including input costs for soil and electricity.  Not bad.

Most of the other veggies at the stalls were $3 for one, two for $5.  Some singles were $3.50.

There were a good deal of young veggies for sale in various-sized pots.

I did note that there was a pretty busy crepe stall selling them from $10-$15.  Each.


Select observations on stall presentation

 

Good use of signage- it’s above eye-level and you can see it over the heads of people milling around the the market, which is a plus for visability.20170528_112640

Great use of visuals in by this stall.  They share pictures of their operation which gives people an understanding of what (aquaponics is and) what they do, and it also tells a story that gives the shoppers a sense of investment into this when they purchase something from them.  It was also displayed in an easy-to-take-in layout.  You can tell some thought went into this.  My hats off to them.

20170528_11165720170528_111637

My impression of this stand was that of a long-time vendor who started selling at the farmers markets back in the day.  This layout is more utilitarian than it is focused on aesthetics.

20170528_113648


This upcoming weekend is the opening day for the majority of farmers markets across the city.  I’m looking to check out one or two of them and see what’s what.

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