Question: Dear Luise: I was thinking about starting a very small cottage industry growing fresh organic herbs for the little family grocery store in my neighborhood. I am at a loss where to start. I know natural whole herbs are in demand, and I would love to supply people in my area, but I fear that I would be starting a business that would invite a lot of complicated paperwork to certify that I’m organic. I know you are not probably up on starting a business such as this. Guess I was just looking for some support, or ideas on how to keep this simple for me and still provide a benefit to those in my community. I get caught up in how to do something sometimes and never get anything done. Regards, Mel
Answer: Dear Mel: Getting caught up in how to proceed with growing and selling fresh organic herbs for fun and profit, (or hard work and profit), is a very good way to begin. The more you learn, the greater your chance of success. You can circumvent a lot of serious errors by talking with others who have done the same thing, and also reading what they have written about their experiences. Get as much information as you can in advance.
I assume that you have a green thumb and are currently growing your own natural whole herbs for your personal use. I must tell you that I don’t know anyone who does it for a business. My daughter grows them for herself and I sometimes get the overflow, but that’s very different. Have you talked with your local grocer about your interest in supplying him with herbal energy boosters? Why not get his take on it? There is also the possibility of creating a client list and delivering or of having a stand at your home if that’s legal where you live!
I have found a book for you at: http://homeharvest.com/incomegardeningbooks.htm . The title of the book is “Herbs For Sale” by Sturdivant. The above URL is a Home Harvest Garden Supply web site. I would be devouring that kind of data if I wanted to do what you have in mind.
You can read frequently asked questions at: http://www.freshcutherbs.com/faq.htm on the subject of Growing and Selling Fresh Cut Herbs. Sandie Shores has created that web site and answers questions, as I understand it.
So that’s my advice in a nutshell regarding growing and selling fresh organic herbs. If my interest lay there, I’d spend a lot of time studying up on it first. Blessings, Luise