The fuel price issue
has changed the way I can do business. My truck - no biggie, gotta get to jobs. So I can suck it up.
The issue is my profitability has been badly affected by the growers all raising their minimum orders for deliveries. I understand they have too, but I'm small potatoes in the buying arena and I have not brought one single truck to my yard this season! Notta. Looking over our sales numbers - we're not significantly off from past years. But I'm forced to include a middle man now, buying discounted retail and since I can't go too much higher than their retail prices without looking the cad, I can't use my old formulas...
Do my own trucking you say? BTDT once in a while it behooves me to take a day off and make a 12 hour road trip for 3 nursuries. Lose a day of pay, fall a day behind. Spend a ton in gas, so I can get my double + 30%. Or take 1/2 day, fight traffic of the city (where the retailers are) pull my own plants, risk not getting what I needed.and get what? 30% at best!
I used to struggle to put together 1000.00 order juggling several jobs together and even worse, put my own dough on the line to prebuy (which I hate to do) and still adding one or two trees for my own yard to make the minimum to get a truck.
and ya know what, I really think the growers like not dealing with us little termites? They're happier shipping big orders to the retailers and large commercial ops - less headache I'm sure. But dang it, this sucks for me. Less variety, quality is hit or miss... ARGH