Rachel Bennett

How To TUESDAY - SETUP a Fruit & Veggie Co-op

With the determination to help my family eat better I started a fruit & veggie co-op. I call it: 5 a day.

And Now I shall show you how:

#1 - Research.
*If you live in an area where there are local farms, call them to see if they sell to personal groups, how much "cases" are, what's in season, etc.
*If you don't live in such areas, call you local grocery stores to find out WHO stocks them. Call the produce company to see if they sell to individuals. Ask about their prices, how you are able to pickup or if delivery is an option, where they get their produce from.

#2 - Personal Trial Run
*First purchase from the farmer or from the Produce company. Try as many varieties as you can, see if you like their quality.
*Take your Purchase Price list to your local grocery store. Compare prices, see if you are REALLY getting the better deal.

#3 - Setting up the Group
*First determine how much you generally spend a week or every two weeks on produce. I decided on $25 for a 2 week period.
*Second, decide how big you want your group to be. How many people can you handle to call, remind, and control that much money. (This may be determined by your minimal order amount if this is required from the farmer or company. 8 - 10 is good.)
*Third, set up an EASY way to keep track of everyone, their money, delivery/pickup dates, etc. I use a spreadsheet from Google Docs.
*Keep in touch by email, google groups, etc. To exchange ideas on how to cook, requests and when they need to get their money in.
*Last - Be sure to have money in hand when you are ordering.

$4 - Purchase & Running the co-op
*The first purchase - EXCITING!! Decide who picks up, who sorts, if everyone sorts and where to do so.
*Group members should pay for the upcoming order, when they pickup their order.

YUMMY!! Support each other by exchanging yummy recipes as a group, show others on how to cook random items, and enjoy eating your 5 a day!!

I hope you enjoyed my How To TUESDAY, if you have more questions, feel free to call.

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