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How to Grow & Market Herbs

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How to Grow & Market Herbs

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Overview

If you grow herbs in your garden, you have probably thought of selling them for a little extra income. Almost any perennial herb and many annual herbs produce in abundance. You will need more than just the excess in your existing herb garden if you want to make a profit. You must decide if you want to sell potted herbs, fresh-cut herbs or dried herbs, and where you can sell them to make a profit.

Step 1

Investigate the potential markets for your herbs before you start expanding your herb garden. You may be able to sell your herbs in two or three markets or, if you prefer to remain small or specialize, concentrate on one.

Step 2

Visit your local farmer's market to determine if there is an opportunity to sell your herbs. See if there are already herb vendors there. Notice if people are buying herbs, what variety and in what form, potted, fresh cut or dried. Talk to the vendors to see how popular different herbs are and if there is a demand. Ask buyers what herbs they would like to buy but have not seen at the market. Generally determine whether you can sell your herbs at the farmer's market and make a profit. You may be able to sell potted herbs, fresh cut herbs, and/or dried herbs, depending on popularity and demand.

Step 3

Make an appointment with chefs at locally owned, upscale restaurants. Some will be more willing to buy locally grown herbs. Find out what herbs they regularly use, which herbs are needed occasionally, any specialty herbs that are hard for the chef to acquire and if the chef is open to doing business with you. Many chefs are thrilled to be able to use fresh-cut herbs in their cuisine. Selling herbs to local restaurants is an excellent way to have an ongoing, stable income, particularly if you can have a signed contract.

Step 4

Visit locally owned health food stores and grocery stores to see if they're interested in buying your herbs. Fresh-cut, and sometimes dried, herbs are popular in health food stores and small, local groceries. The owners may allow you to place your herbs on consignment in their shops, meaning you're only paid if the herbs sell. The shopkeeper will want a percentage, and anything that does not sell in a timely fashion will need to be removed and replaced with fresh.

References

  • Cornell University: Growing Herbs and Flowers for Market
  • Herbatorium: More Herbs, More Money
  • Herb Gardening Today: Growing Herbs for Profit

Who Can Help

  • Oregon State University: Herbs and Flowers
Keywords: herbs for profit, selling my herbs, marketing herbs

About this Author

At home in rural California, Kate Carpenter has been writing articles and web content for several well known marketeers since 2007. With a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Kansas and A Master of Education equivalent from the University of Northern Colorado, Carpenter brings a wealth of diverse experience to her writing.