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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Gardiner, WA, USA
    Posts
    57

    Default Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    Hello everyone,
    I'm looking for pros and cons of using glass or plastic bottles at farmers markets. Some of my local friends say that honey in plastic jars does not sell well at farmers markets. I also would like to do a little bit of internet marketing/shipping and of course plastic bottles would have much less chance of breakage. What do you use and what do you recommend?
    Also what is your most popular size of containers.
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Norton, MA, USA
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    I can see folks at farmer's markets wanting glass over plastic. It's more eco friendly and it looks nicer. As for internet shopping, I imagine plastic weighs a LOT less than glass for internet shipping. The shipping prices I've seen for honey are staggering.

    I am just starting to sell honey, but I have worked a few fairs and sold club honey there. I see mostly 1 lb containers going out. I plan to offer 1 lb and 8 oz for now, 2 lb if I continue to get a lot of honey (almost 100 pounds this year!!!)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Grosse Ile, Michigan, USA
    Posts
    2,818

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    I honestly think people who use alot of honey prefer the plastic squeeze bottles, its quicker and less of a mess to use. John

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Lima, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    720

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    My experience is that some people do prefer it in the glass for various reasons. Particularly if you market to health food stores.

    But, since I sell more of the smaller sizes over the internet, breakage is a big issue and it's been far more economical to go to plastic. I can't say if it's hurt sales because you only produce a limited amount of honey and it sells out every year.

    -Tim

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Pepperell, MA.
    Posts
    3,741

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    I use plastic if I ship. Glass for everything else.
    "My wife always wanted girls. Just not thousands and thousands of them......"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Seattle, Washington State
    Posts
    4,398

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    glass for farmers markets is a must here in the seattle area. Plastic for shipping unless customer wants glass.
    Chef Isaac..Culinary Arts and Honey are a sweet mix! http://www.sweetascanbeehoneyfarm.com & http://www.adoptahive.info

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,206

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    Quote Originally Posted by Bluidshay View Post
    I can see folks at farmer's markets wanting glass over plastic. It's more eco friendly and it looks nicer.
    I have noticed that too. And then I put honey in Gamber's one pound Invert container and those who prefered glass for eco reasons started buying plastic for convenience reasons. I'm selling more of the one pound inverts than I am the glass one pounds.

    I have shipped glass. Plastic holds up better to dropping and crushing, I believe. I saw a show on tv onced about what a package shipped UPS has to be able to withstand. You have to be able to drop it 3 feet and it has to withstand 75 pounds dropped onto it. If I recall correctly. Otherwise, it is a matter of luck.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Winchester, VA, USA
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    I need to check with my local health department to see if I can do this...but what I want to do possibly is once I start getting honey to sell locally is offering a discount on returned glassware. Say $.50 off the purchase of the same size or larger container of honey. I figure that way I get my glass back at a lesser price then I would pay to replace with new and the customer gets a discount and we both get the good karma of recycling.

    But of course I would have to weigh out the time and effort it would take to wash and sanitize the returned glass to see if it was even worth it. But right now that is part of my plan.

    And I agree with others...glass locally, plastic for shipping.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    26,206

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    This is not advice, it is a question. Why would you want to ask your local health dept. anything ,as long as you are using clean jars to put your honey in? Besides, forgiveness is easier to get than permission.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Marlin, Texas
    Posts
    134

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    What Mark said. It's always better to beg for forgiveness than to ask for permission.

    Walt
    "Having Fun with Nature"
    www.rgf-tx.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Palm Bay, FL, USA
    Posts
    2,297

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    Yep! If they find out they'll ask if you're washing the returned bottles properly. If you ask first, it's the nature of a bureaucrat to say "No!" Why? Because they don't want to get out of the Break Room and research it for you.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Knox County, Ohio
    Posts
    2,694

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    There is a much simpler way than that. Just offer a refill price too. That way, you are filling THEIR jar. If the jar wasn't cleaned properly, they have only themselves to blame.

    Here in Ohio, bottling honey is under the Department of Agriculture. The Health Department has no jurisdiction over honey processing. The Health Dept. has tried to harass beekeepers a time or two and gotten smacked down by the Dept. of Ag.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Gardiner, WA, USA
    Posts
    57

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    Thanks guys, it seems that is glass at markets and plastic for shipping.
    I appreciate the responses.....Klaus

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Nigril, Jamaica
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: Glass or plastic bottles for farmers markets and USPS shipping

    In my neck of the woods the consumers prefer glass, its my preference too, however some farmers has started plastic recently this is been watched with cautious optimism.

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