hot pepper sales dilemma

sandy0225(z5 Indiana)August 26, 2014

I grow a lot of unusual hot peppers and take them to market in a red basket marked "basket of pain". I get all the crazy pepper people showing up at my booth and since I"m crazy too, I like to encourage this.
However, I have a problem. a very nice Thai couple that owns a Thai restaurant keeps showing up at the market around 10 am, we run till 12, and wanting to buy all my hot peppers. I'm usually very busy then, and I do actually like these people so I shoot them a price and they buy them all. Then the rest of the market, I mentally kick myself for selling them cheaper, and then when my other pepper people show up, I don't have any.
I've been thinking of telling them that I will not sell to them until the market is over, and then making them a good deal on what's left. And if they do want them during market, it would be full price, like anyone else. I really don't want to make them mad though, because I do think having them in the wings to play "clean up" after maarket would be ideal.
What do you all think would be the best way to handle this?

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That's always a difficult situation, especially when there are cultural barriers and misunderstandings can arise.

What I would personally do is take the passive approach, reserving a certain proportion of the peppers (say, 40%?) aside and out of view. After the couple makes their purchase, place those peppers on the table for subsequent customers. The risk is that you may end up taking some home, but I would prefer that over possibly offending a good customer. JMO.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2014 at 3:48PM
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its hard to change a price upwards when you've already offered and sold for a lower price. how much is the price difference?

    Bookmark   August 26, 2014 at 4:32PM
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sandy0225(z5 Indiana)

Thanks for all your help...
I got it figured out. I'm going to go by the restaurant and talk to them on a night that's not busy like tomorrow night, and tell them that I would like to try to sell the peppers at full price at the market, but when the market is over I will bring them all the peppers that are leftover at an even cheaper price than I've been selling to them at the market. They don't seem to really care what kind of peppers they are as long as they are at least as hot as a habanero. I think they'll go for that.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2014 at 5:23PM
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That sounds like a long as they think they'll have enough.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2014 at 5:25PM
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little_minnie(zone 4a)

If they are a restaurant, work a deal out to supply to them. You could be paid in spring rolls LOL. Now I am drooling.

    Bookmark   August 26, 2014 at 7:57PM
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sandy0225(z5 Indiana)

yes they make really good spring rolls. now i'm drooling too. Thanks!

    Bookmark   August 27, 2014 at 8:44PM
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I would do anything to make them happy, so I could count on their business next year, and then just plan for it by planting more.

    Bookmark   August 28, 2014 at 1:19AM
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I've dealt with restaurants for years and when this situation comes up I might offer a slight discount but tell them that with a pre-order I can give a bigger discount. Your situation might be different b/c my quantity of sellable peppers is more of an issue of what I pick, within limits. I was a bit upset this past week when a customer came to pickup a bu. of chili peppers but due to confusion (over name) I had to repick Anaheim peppers and find a home for the others.

You don't necessarily need to arrange your planting to accomodate this one customer. Usually these types of purchasers are sporadic in purchases and they will likely leave you for another supplier next year.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2014 at 8:14AM
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How many times have they bought from you? You can tell by talking to them what they are really after, price, quality, quantity, consistent supply. roam around your area and see where they might get other sources than yours. Research why they are buying from you cuz asians wont tell you everything right away. Ofcourse they want a good deal too :-)

    Bookmark   September 11, 2014 at 6:08AM
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sandy0225(z5 Indiana)

Yep that's working fine now. I can pick all the peppers I want for the market, knowing I have someone who will clean them up after market. I'm selling them at the house all weekend at our stand and taking them to the restaurant on Monday.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2014 at 9:32AM
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