Sunday, July 25, 2010

How to make $1,000 picking and selling cherries

The average cherry tree will produce five or six bushels of cherries during the average growing season if properly cared for by pruning and spraying. The recent price for cherries in the local supermarket was about $3.99 per pound. Two years ago the author stopped at a roadside stand in British Columbia that sold strictly cherries. The owner of this stand was an old man who originally came to Canada from Portugal as a young man.

Just as I entered the stand a terrific thunderstorm broke out leaving me stranded in the stand while hailstones the size of cherries rained down. Lacking anything better to do I started a conversation with the owner. He looked absolutely like he was broke, and was trying to eke out a living by selling cherries.

What he proceeded to tell me really raised my eyebrows, and made me realize this man was in reality a multi-millionaire all based on his cherry business. He sold every cherry he could grow in this small non-descript roadside stand. What he actually had out of sight in the Fraser River Valley was an orchard of 518 cherry trees. At the time he was asking $3.95 per pound for his cherries. Now it doesn’t take a mathematical genius to figure out his orchard was producing around 2,850 bushel per year. At around 50 pounds per bushel amounts to about 142,500 pounds at $3.95 per pound or $562,875 gross. This little man was clearing over $200,000 per year just from cherries he sold by the side of the road.

You might not have a cherry orchard in your back yard, but there are plenty of cherry growers that will allow you to pick cherries for them, and pay you in cash. They will also allow you to pick cherries for a fee low enough so you can make some money. Like many other businesses tell the owner of the orchard what you are doing and he will offer you a much lower price for the cherries.

To be most effective you should have another person in the act like a wife or other family member so you can devote all your time on picking cherries. The season is short usually lasting less then a month.

There are many places to sell cherries, one of the best is at a farmers market another is from the side of the road. The ideal situation is a roadside stand on a busy highway. With a stand you can sell a wide range of fresh organic produce.

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