Our first foray into the world of market trading will be the 8th annual Kirkbymoorside Christmas Market on Saturday 26 November.
Up until now we've considered markets to be too great a risk. One immediate aspect that cannot be ignored is the cost. At one two day market in the Dales this summer the price for a stand was £360! That was before any electricity that we would need for fridges, and more importantly did not take into account the cost of raising our animals, preparing the meat, getting to the venue and a night staying nearby.
Waste is also a major concern. There's no way we could take our produce and it not sell. Can you imagine? We would have to bring home meat and freeze it. That severely limits its future sales potential, leading to it potentially going to waste.
And, of course, there's the small matter of making money. Could we sell at prices that allow a financial return? Farmers markets have been popular for some time, but looking around a few locally they appear to lack actual, er, farmers... Perhaps they are no longer relevant?
People in and around Kirkby tell us that the Christmas Market is well supported. So, at the very least we can use the opportunity to reach beyond social media and present our produce in the town.
The plan, primarily, is to sell bacon and sausages, both products that everyone can cook. In this day and age joints of pork and hogget appear to be a specialised food for some. That said, we'll take a few pieces, balancing the need to raise awareness of what we do, while avoiding potential waste. We should also be able to take some minced hogget. Mince is another meat product that is easily converted into a meal. Many will be unaware of what hogget is though, so that will need some explanation on the day.
Why start now..? Easy. We need to continue growing our customer base for one thing. It's also nagged that these markets have potential customers walking about at them, so we need to manage the risk and try to make them work for us. In this specific case the pitch price is reasonable, we don't have to travel far and we can work on local marketing prior to the event. This one off may lead to a model for future events.
Come and see us.