Thursday, May 13, 2010

Wholesale Fruit and Vegetable Pricing

I get questions often to my office from producers asking what price they should charge for fruit or vegetables they grow.  I tell them that a lot of the pricing depends on where and to who they are marketing their products.  If the farmer sells wholesale or directly to the consumer, the price to charge will be different.  Generally the price to a wholesaler will be lower than if he were to sell direct to the consumer.

I suggest that if you are selling directly to the consumer visit locations near you that are already selling direct such as farmers' markets to get a feel and flavor of what others are charging for their products.  If you are thinking of selling wholesale, visit a produce auction.  There are several produce auctions in Missouri.

Another location to find wholesale prices is the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) where they started in 1915 with their Market News Reports.  Over time the number of Market News Reports expanded to include fruits, vegetables and now specialty crops.  The Fruit and Vegetable Marketing Report is further broken down into specific crops such as asparagas and tomatoes.  You can search the Fruit and Vegetable Report by crop, location or shipping movement.

AMS is now also publishing the National Fruit and Vegetable Organic Summary.  Available free every Tuesday the new report provides an easy-to-use summary of the market data, including wholesale and shipping point prices and movement data.  The report provides all available organic market data at a glance; thus, significantly reducing the amount of time customers spend searching for organic market data.  For more information about the Market News Portal or the new National Fruit and Vegetable Organic Summary, contact Fred Teensma at (510) 637-1815 or

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