Three weeks ago I took a part time job working in a big box crafting store. So far I work about 12-15 hours a week. I love my job for the most part, but it is long hours on my feet on a hard, concrete surface. A week ago my husband took a job working about 25-30 hours a week for a guy who rehabs houses that have been foreclosed to get ready for resale. It is good, sweaty work. At this point we are making about $9 an hour each. It isn't bad and certainly is helping us make ends meet. But that is not what this post is about.
Each week we meet so many interesting people who stop by our booth in the flea market. Sometimes they are just tasting our product and other times they are buyers. Whichever, we always try to strike up a bit of a conversation with them. Sometimes they want to talk and start a conversation with us and other times we ask them questions to get them talking. Typical conversation centers around where our jerky comes from, if we make it ourselves or not (not), or where they are from. We often get visitors from out of state so it is fun to talk about their state, why they are here, and sometimes what they do for a living. We share that we are recently moved here, starting up this business, and a bit about our family. Sometimes our kids are with us and we will take a bit about them, our homeschooling life, baseball, and our church life.
Several months ago we had a guy and his wife come by one of our booths. I had a fairly lengthy conversation with them about their product that they were interested in selling. They had been in the food business for a while they said and were in the process of bottling a bbq sauce. They also had soups they said and other items as well. I told them that I would be interested in trying some of their products and considering putting it in our booth to sell. I told them to bring me some samples when they were ready. I never heard from them again.......until yesterday.
They stopped by our booth on the produce aisle and spoke with my husband. They had their bbq sauce bottled and wondered if we were interested in selling it for them. We can't because the market has a rule that you can't sell the same item or product as someone else within 50 ft of your booth. We are in the center and right across the aisle from us is a hot sauce and bbq sauce shop. So we directed them over to the other shop. BUT the guy said that he had jams and jellies that he was interested in selling as well and we may be interested in that. We are and will be getting in touch with him. He also gave us some awesome information about possibly being able to set up a produce booth with jams/jellies/pickles and our jerky. We will be looking into that as well. We can set up during the week and extend our week from just a Friday-Sunday business to a 5-7 days a week business. This would increase our sales as well as our visibility in the communities around here.
We have some trepidation about this as well. One, we are creating our own line of beef jerky. How will this help this goal. Two, we will be making more money and have a bit more flexibility in our hours as well as giving us time for developing our beef jerky business as well. Three, there is no guarantee of income. We make what we can but can't guarantee making any money with this. (We can guarantee our income with our other jobs working for others, however, it is limited.)
We have lots of things to research right now--where to get fresh produce, permissions to set up in this new venue, setting days and times and much more.