Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 33

Thread: Selling Honey

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Gilmer,TX USA
    Posts
    1,830

    Default Selling Honey

    Well, I am starting early trying to figure out how i am going to sell the honey that i plan on getting this spring. I am shooting for getting about 55 gallons, may be closer to half that. Thats not the point though.

    I have looked at all the feed stores, small non chain gas stations, and health food stores- they all have a supplier of local or "local" (we have a guy flooding the health food store(s) with "local" "honey") honey. The large semi local trades days has several guys selling it already. So those are out. Also all the farmers markets have guys selling more of that "local honey" I have a grower that i can sell a bunch to. But that still does not leave hardly any options

    What are your thoughts on road side stands? I live on a rural oil top road that about 20-30% of the people have been in jail or close to it, so do not think that that is the best option. Cannot really see the stand from my house to. I could get plenty of traffic from 2-3 highways. But does me know good if someone has stolen it all. Better way to do this?

    Has anybody set a case down at your work or a relatives work or even a large business in the break room with a jar for money? Would this work?

    I can sell it by word of mouth, but really need something lined up to supplement that...for some reason (maybe they are like minded) most of the people in our circles are penny pincher's and would not pay the prices that I can get.

    Only other thing i can think of is pull off the highway on an abandoned driveway and sell it off the tailgate...any thoughts on this?

    Please anybody hints?

    Thanks

    Mike
    Last edited by Kingfisher Apiaries; 03-19-2011 at 07:41 AM. Reason: Question Added
    Please check out the new kingfisherapiaries.com!
    Like us on Facebook

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Mansfield,Ohio
    Posts
    77

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    The place my wife works has a stand in the lunch room to set honey or what ever to sell also they do collections for death in family's or long term sicknesses.For the most part they have not had any problems with the money boxes.They probably have 100-150 people work there. I don't think I would want to set mine out by the street with a money drop box if someone can't keep an eye on it.But thats just me. Back in the day thats the way my dad sold stuff but things have changed now days. I'm thinking of hitting up a couple fruit and vegetable stands near me this year seems that they do a bunch of business and don't sell honey that I know of. Good Luck..

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Knox Co, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Mike,

    It can take a while to develope your market niche. Multiple markets are desireable, not all your eggs in one basket! You might want to drop into some of the more local markets and let the manager/owner know you are in business. You might want to drop off a bottle, with label, for them. I have people bypass the local healthfood store to buy my honey because they want honey produced as close to their home as possible. They take one tablespoon a day for their allergies. You also may try to provide better sercive by checking/stocking shelves, offer to buy back unsold product or rotate stock, etc.

    You may want to periodically "set up" somewhere. Or, go to farmers market type events. Treat them as marketing events not sales events. You will sell some product. But, try to build up a loyal client base that wants to purchase honey on e regular basis. Do things to set yourself apart from your competition. Bring an observation hive with the entrance blocked, wear a clean, attractive shirt and clean pants. You can look like a farmer, just don't look like you got done shoveling manure all morning!

    Marketing a work is good too! My best customer turned out to be a co-worker. Her nephew had bees but they died out the winter before he left for college. Her family was used to getting honey from him. Now, they get it from me through my co-worker. They have taken it as far as Kodiak Island!

    Look at other sucessful marketers of other local products in your area for other marketing ideas.

    Tom

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Reno, NV USA
    Posts
    2,310

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Another possibility is to reconsider those stores. Do they have either comb honey or creamed honey? If you know what you are doing, Bee-O-Pacs have a huge profit margin and are rarely seen in stores. Why you ask - because bees and beekeepers alike hate those darn things. There are management tricks to get bees to work BOP's but that is another story. Other comb honey options - cut comb, chunk honey, and Ross Rounds would probably be a niche. I have never seen local creamed honey (except for our's of course)- but a word of warning - you may need to demo this product frequently because a lot of people don't know what it is.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Outagamie County, Wisconsin USA
    Posts
    900

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Ask the friends and relatives to post your ad at their work either on an actual bulletin board or the company's "electronic" bulletin boards that many companies have via their computers/webpages. Sales could be accomplished either by that person having a few jars there or the ads could just have your phone number, etc. on it. Once your honey is out there and getting around, you will have some repeat customers and also more word of mouth. Make sure to have your phone number, etc. on your labels so it is easy for people to get more thru you.

    Let people know in advance that you will have honey available so they can plan ahead and you might even take some orders ahead of time with payment on delivery.

    Use as many avenues as you can to spread out sales. What about a Craig's list ad? I live in a fairly good neighborhood and used to set out splits from my garden plants and had a jar there. Worked pretty good although we didn't get much traffic. My sister took that idea and did that in her community on a fairly busy residential street and was very very $uccessful.

    Someone near Lake Winnebago had a small bait & fishing tackle room near the end of their driveway outfitted with a video camera to keep problems down.

    Maybe have a sign by the road and direct people up to your house for the actual honey sale and mention days or hours you are open.

    As far as selling your honey in stores right next to someone else's honey........... make sure your labels catch the eye! As far as farmer's markets go, people sometimes buy at the first stand they see. Also, be a little creative using ribbons or material, etc. to fancy up the jars. People go for the country look. Take a square of material (use a pinking shears to cut it out so it won't fray much) and put it over the lid (already on the jar) and tie ribbon or twine around the jar's neck to secure the material. Maybe someone you know has scraps of material. Maybe you'll find material with a honey bee theme!
    Last edited by Bee Bliss; 03-19-2011 at 09:36 AM. Reason: Used a wrong word

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Gilmer,TX USA
    Posts
    1,830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Thanks for the ideas...keep em coming.

    I would have people come to the house, but our policy has been not to do that. Really do not want just anybody coming up (we are .25 mi off the road) and seeing anything we have. I know that sounds funny, but these days people like to walk with stuff. We have had neighbors that were pawn kings

    Mike
    Please check out the new kingfisherapiaries.com!
    Like us on Facebook

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Concrete, WA, USA
    Posts
    761

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Hey Mike - i sell a lot at Coffee shops - i just make my weekly rounds and restock - most dont charge anything for it - some are 10% but they sell out each week

    it gives there costumers something to talk about - also leave business cards - people talk and people want bees at there houses - more holding yards and out yards!!!! - i have a stand at my house on major Hwy so it does well here too
    Doing the Right things Right
    http://thevalleysbuzz.webs.com/

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Seneca, sc
    Posts
    830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Some people claim that they get $8 a pound on this forum. If that is true I would drive to a farmers market, spend four to five hours explaining how great my honey is. In my part of the country there are people selling honey for $8 a quart. It is not worth my time to do all that for $2.50 a pound when I can sell it for $120 for a five gallon bucket in five minutes. The marketing honey gig is not the reason that I got into bees, if it was I would have a job a walmart. Let the bees keep it and sell the bees. You have to deal with the libility/insurance thing on selling honey too. Selling bees all you have to say, as they are putting them in the car is, you know these bugs sting don't you.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Gilmer,TX USA
    Posts
    1,830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    I have gotten 8 bucks a pound, got to play the game right.

    I have (or will have early next week) a LLC, and I am getting insurance, and I am going somewhere legal to custom extract.

    On the leaving them the honey...I can or make get syrup or around 2.50 a gallon, and I make a minim of 35 bucks a gallon.

    mike
    Please check out the new kingfisherapiaries.com!
    Like us on Facebook

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Seneca, sc
    Posts
    830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    I wish you the best, there is just not a market here to make any money on honey. It is hard to sell a man something that he doesn't need when he can't make his house payment or buy groceries for his children.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Baker Lake, Nunavut, Canada
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    You could tour the schools and put on presentations for the children. The teachers could send out flyers to the parents ahead of time with an order form and you could sell some that way. You could also go to the bridal shops and wedding planners and let them know what a great idea it is to give away honey as a gift for the guests. Hope this helps!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Gilmer,TX USA
    Posts
    1,830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    OK folks...so what works as far as roadside goes?
    1. Lets talk self serve
    2. What about parking on the side of a highway on an abandoned drive/gravel area? Watermelon guys do it an make $$$$$

    mike
    Please check out the new kingfisherapiaries.com!
    Like us on Facebook

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Anderson County, Texas
    Posts
    1,254

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Mike, I am located in small town area. I made 500+ pounds from 8 productive colonies [not counting my nucs and splits]. I sold out early July. Here is a summary of how I worked.

    I would not allow individual sales from the house. Just to disruptive for the dollars and time spent with each customer explaining how good our product was and why it is worth more than Walmart. So if an individual wanted to buy 10+ pounds at a time, then I would sell from the house, otherwise they would have to go to some of the retail establishments. I charged the same price to all. I charged $4.00 for 8 oz. honeybear, $5.00 for 12 0z. honeybear, and $6.00 for 16 oz skep.

    My retail establishments were 2 health food stores, which purchased primarily 8 oz. bears at $4.00 and sold for $10.50. Both ran out and were begging for more;

    A feed store, which only bought 16 oz. skeps for $6.00 and resold for $10.00. This feed store probably sold more than any others [except what we retailed ourselves] and was begging for more middle of July, and still calls asking when he can get more as he has dozens of customer calling for more. I only buy feed from this feed store now. I was in the store few weeks back when another customer of his asked him when he would have some more of that great honey. He referred him to me and I said that I can't control the weather or the nectar production;

    And a peddler at our farmer's market. He is the only one who would take a chance buying a dozen [out of about 15 vendors]. He about doubled what I charged him and 2 days later he called wanting a dozen of each weight. Couple of weeks later he called back but I was sold out.

    I put my phone number on our containers and have had 30 to 40 people call us wanting to buy cases and be put at the top of the list. There is no doubt I could easily sell several thousand pounds within a couple of months. However, my biggest salesman was the honey itself. My neighbor [the husband] bought about $50.00 worth when he found out I had local honey. He was griped at by his wife for paying so much for honey, that is until she tasted it and then she called me and apologized stating she didn't know that honey could taste so good.

    I will only put my name on a superior product. I don't heat at all. Raw honey has a much richer flavor and any heating decreases this rich natural flavor, the hotter the easier/quicker to strain, but more damage to the product. Good honey takes time to strain.

    Kindest Regards
    Danny Unger

    PS I had another health food store that had ordered local East Texas Honey from her supplier. All was dark as syrup and strong as molasses. My wife was in the store later and she had only sold a few jars and most of that they tried to return. She later wanted to purchase mine as word had gotten around how much better mine was, but I was sold out. Several other feed stores refused to sell my honey as they had been burned by 'local honey' that was dark and sorry tasting. My feed store even tried this source when I couldn't supply his needs. He tried a jar and told the local beek to come and pick it up because he was to embarrased to sell that stuff from his store.
    "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale, 1776

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Gilmer,TX USA
    Posts
    1,830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Thanks danny...over here we have a guy selling "local" "honey" and another guy that sells good honey but has monopolized the area. All the health food stores sell the first, and most of the feed stores etc sell the later. Just trying to think outside the box!

    mike
    Please check out the new kingfisherapiaries.com!
    Like us on Facebook

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
    Posts
    27,040

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Quote Originally Posted by Kingfisher Apiaries View Post
    Watermelon guys do it an make $$$$$ mike
    Maybe if you sold watermelons too, it would be worth while. I have sold both roadside. Were I doing it again, I would sell watermelons and have some honey handy for the odd sale or two.

    I find, unless you are in a thriving Farmer's Mkt where honey is already a good seller, that one spends alot of time trying to sell a small amount of honey.

    I'm sure there are others who would disagree.

    If you do find a Farmerts Mkt to sell your honey in, make sure it is the highest price at the mkt. You may not sell the most, but you will make the most profit per lb sold. And you will help to get the price up, becaused, eventually, others will follow.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Gilmer,TX USA
    Posts
    1,830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    All the farmers markets around here have tons of local honey and "Local" "Honey" for sale. Kinda shoved out of that market...but still an option.

    Mike
    Please check out the new kingfisherapiaries.com!
    Like us on Facebook

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Snowmass, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    2,497

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Well, understanding it your farmers markets are packed with honey vendors and the stores are out your best best would be to sell roadside.

    Couple of things. Find a good spot on a busy road. A good spot gives the people a place to pull off the road safely. Good spots I have seen are roadside rest areas, parking lots, and gravel areas off the side of the road. I don't think a driveway will cut it. Also, one of the busiest guys I saw that sold honey this way did it at a three way intersection of two major roads so one was stopping and the others had to slow down to make the T-intersection turn.

    Get large signs out AHEAD of where you are selling on the side of the road. Simple but neat - "Fresh Local honey harvested this week!!" something like that. Have samples ready and multiple if you have various source honeys. Have change and keep your prices as even as you can so you don't have to make weird change. Have an umbrella or something so people are not standing in the direct heat dripping on your table....they will take more time if it's cooler and comfortable. Have a 5 gallon bucket with ice and bottled water and sell these for a buck...if it's hot they will buy honey and a cold bottle of water, trust me. Course it is Texas...maybe some RC Colas would sell better. Also, if you have samples...have wet wipes...people get honey all over themselves.

    Lastly, try Wed and Fri afternoons. People get paid on Fridays and they are running out of food by Wed. so these seem to be good days to get out.

    Hope that helps...best of luck and don't undersell yourself.
    Life is tough, but it's tougher when you're stupid. John Wayne

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Gilmer,TX USA
    Posts
    1,830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    Alpha...those are along the lines I was thinking. Would gravel spots on the highway dept ROW work? They are usually coupled with a gravel pile or a oil field related spot. That is where the water melon guys sell at. I mean the worst that could happen is I get chased off or a ticket from the DPS.

    Mike
    Please check out the new kingfisherapiaries.com!
    Like us on Facebook

  19. #19
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Knox Co, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    830

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    If the farmers markets have lots of people selling honey there may be a reason. People may look to them for honey. You might be surprised at how much honey you sell.

    Tom

  20. #20
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Snowmass, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    2,497

    Default Re: Selling Honey

    As long as there is plenty of room for people to get off the road then I think you will be fine with DPS. You may have to try different locals to find the best ones... but people like honey and they like local...so you should do ok. Make sure you have a nice display and bottle. PM me and I can give you some ideas in that area if you don't already have it locked in.

    Good luck.
    Life is tough, but it's tougher when you're stupid. John Wayne

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads