Fair market price for super hots

homefry319(5b NE)August 5, 2012

Just curious what you guys think would be fair market price, Ive read anywhere from $30-$100 a pound

We normally sell ours $1-$2 for 1 or two peppers depending on the size etc..

but today at the market we saw a guy selling them(bhuts) for $10 a peppers (*()&*)&* was my reaction because people were still buying them

I want to know what you guys think as I think were pretty fair at the $1-$2 fyi I sell them in little plastic baggies and they weight anywhere from 1/4oz - 3/4oz but unless we have a certified scale we cant sell them by weight(why we sell them by piece)

I also will mention we wont sell to anyone that looks under 18(no we dont card) any I give fair warning to people about eating raw

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Fair market price: whatever the market will bare.

If he's selling them for $10 and people (crazy people) are buying them, then lighten up your guilty feelings and under cut him by a couple of bucks. Hey if I could get $8 / Bhut I'd go for it ;-))

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 3:24PM
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homefry319(5b NE)

I dont think I can sway my guilty feelings that much, I thought we were over charging $2 for one pepper(same weights as mention above)

I guess Ill have to test the market a bit, it seems for selling them they've been hit or miss, mostly I see girlfriends/wives talking their boyfriend out of buying them(kind of funny actually)

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 4:01PM
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I'm with ottawapepper. If they are selling, there is nothing wrong with bringing your price UP to the market value! Nothing should stop you from putting an informational "approximate weight" on the baggie, and pricing them accordingly, is there? 1/4 ounce approximate = $3 per pod. 1/2 ounce = $5 per pod...

Either way, good luck with the sales. No one here will go past a jalapeno. Habanero made them cry. Moruga made them swear at me... EVEN after I warned them and they said they could handle it!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 4:25PM
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esox07 (4b)

I say charge what the market will bear and if you still feel guilty, then donate the extra bucks to a good charity. That way, you get what you want, the customer gets what they want and you help out a third party. WIN-WIN-WIN. Or, just make it a Win-WIN and keep the money you earned.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 5:00PM
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homefry319(5b NE)


no we cannot mention any type of weight, the measures and weights guy even got my that we were selling pints/quarts for each instead of labeled as pint or quarts

we have had pretty good luck with the peppers weve had, I didnt do many hots thinking they wouldnt sell, but a lot of people have been asking for hotter or in the range that I didnt grow. Just need to change it up a bit...

I need to find that threshold of how many super hots will sell, I like making powders and sauces but theres only so much I can use

this year its been odd weve either sold completely out or barely any

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 7:07PM
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I guess that is the nature of business... Quirky. But super hots are garnering more attention. I grow them for myself, and mostly, I powder them and sauce them too.

How about small/medium/large designations? I hope I am not pestering you but there has to be a way to reach out and get those guys to get the ok from the nags. They make chocolate taste ever so good-n-spicy! Maybe sell chocolate bars too? What girl won't let the guy buy her chocolate? Not to mention the health benefits of the capsaicin!

Some of my friends use the powders in fudge, brownies, and cupcakes. I never thought of that and haven't tried it yet.

Anyway, just trying to help. NICE Jalapenos too, BTW!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 7:32PM
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I agree with esox07. Nothing wrong making some extra if the market calls for it.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 7:38PM
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I personally think super hot prices are way too high.

There is no reason they should be as high priced as they are except that the first people to have seeds,powders or pods charged what they did.

A lot of fools and their $ have parted ways.

You'll probably notice that Bhut pods (fresh) are going for as low as $13.00LB on the net.
The market is getting flooded with all super hot varieties lately.
I expect that until the next worlds hottest comes along prices should drop and maybe become more reasonable.

Side rant:

It rubs me the wrong way when I see some one I gave an SASBE seed offer to selling seeds at $75. each+ or a gazillion $ a pod from seeds they got for free.

Ya,once the seeds hit the post office they aren't mine anymore.
It's really none of my biz.

But several people are on my list of not gonna sasbe or trade with anymore.
I don't care if they have the rarest pepper seed in the world to trade.
It's probably a cross or not what it's supposed to be anyway.
99% of the super hot trades I grew this year were crosses or just not as advertised.

I do trade with a FEW seed vendors but they were upfront about selling seeds from the start.
They don't pretend they are a backyard gardener that can't afford buying the seeds for $5.00 - ? a pack plus shipping.

"Paying it forward" isn't a reference to pre pay through Pay Pal...

I got most of my super hots years ago for free,trade or sasbe.
Butch T must have given thousands of seeds away free.
I know he sent me some in 2006 or so just for the asking.

I love spreading the heat but don't like feeling like a sucker for doing so.

End Rant. :)

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 7:40PM
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esox07 (4b)

I guess the weight and measures thing is just red tape. Like needing a permit to sell Lemonade on the corner. I guess I would just find some different size containers and sell them by the "Container" or scoop. Simply fill the container and then dump them in a bag for the customer. They sell minnows that way, by the "Scoop". Maybe just use a regular quart containers and call it a "Large" instead of a quart and use a pint and call it a "Small". Or a Gallon container and call it a "Jumbo".

I would grow some Habaneros. They are a great middle ground between semi hots and super hots. They are about as hot as the average person would ever need. They are great producers and well known too. Of course, a lot of your super hots are being sold simply for the novelty of it. So someone can say they ate one or so they can play a joke on their room mate.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 7:46PM
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homefry319(5b NE)

Thanks guys

I want to note that I will always pay for seed when needed, even if its for personal use eventually it will go to market if I have an over abundance of it..

next year I plan on isolating all my super hots to save seed and even some of my none

@ Bruce

I have two habs planed for next year a chocolate and a Trinidad type, I did have a row of Jamaican hot chocolate planned this year but that was my one and only seed failure, 1 plant out of a half tray(36) I have a thread floating around of stuff I want to do for 2013 season already, its changing pretty much every week

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 7:57PM
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Sounds like you have some very rare varieties. I would feel the same about giving them away. It is amazing that a seed could sell for so much, but does not surprise me.

As far as the market for super hots-

The way I look at it- if people are willing pay the price for them, it must say they like what they are getting. Try to see what sold most this year and take note to what people want.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 7:57PM
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Um, what smokemaster? I stopped giving away seeds on another site because I never got so much as a thank you from anyone I sent the seeds to at MY EXPENSE. Paying it forward (and I never was offered a single "free" seed on that site to pay back/forward BTW) was not an issue. I was trying to propagate the seed community. One kid there was shaking down the community and nothing was ever done to that little creep that wanted to start a pod/seed selling business!

I'll spread the heat, but cautiously. I'm no pro grower, not looking to start a business, but I am looking to grow and learn as well as spread the heat...

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 8:02PM
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I could be wrong but to save seeds they need to be a half mile away?

Another note-if you get hybrid seeds and grow them out, and then save the seeds from the pods you grew, they will not be the same hybrid or do the same thing.

Some of these varieties need really long seasons give really strong productive seeds. If production is what your after it may be best to use purchased seeds.

Again, I could be wrong.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 8:04PM
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homefry319(5b NE)

@Calcat36 sorry I walked away from the comp before I could respond,

theres more red tape with prepared goods, you need to have a commercial kitchen that has been inspected by the health department(I could use restaurant/catering kitchens but its a pain)

not sure what the policy is on dried good, Ill have too look into that


they need to be about a half mile yes, or you can isolate them(many commercial seed providers isolate them) using materials like argibon or other fine mesh(they still allow water and light in)

also it depends on the hybrid, if its an early 1 (f1) then most likely it wont grow true, but if its a stable variety then the odds of not growing true are considerably less , most of what we grow are heirloom types or known stable hybrids

as for long seasons most my superhots are started in dec/jan so I have a long enough season to save seed as Id dedicate 1 plant per type to save seed,

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 9:04PM
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Darn pepper product hating gubbermint! NO PEPPERS NO PEACE!

Why can't you sell the pods here? (In the appropriate thread of course)...

You put pods in a box, and customer puts cash/money order in envelope to you. Gubbermint takes care of shipping, unless you go UPS or FedEx which happens to be much more successful...

(Still too new to understand the "trade" vs "sell" theory here so feel free to cane me if necessary).

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 9:29PM
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homefry319(5b NE)


that is a good concept although Im not fan of shipping produce but I have more than enough to deal with than worrying about boxes etc...(I know theres some legalities but not many within the states)

either way I dont think you can sell things here(not positive, but not the reason I come to these forums anyways)

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 10:06PM
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if it fits ....it ships .... lol

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 10:32PM
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Going back to the initial question about pricing, I have a different take on what the market will bear. If you are making a decent profit at $1-$2 per pod, but you raise your price to $10 per pod because someone else has managed to sell some pods at that price, then you can probably count on a lot of people getting the idea to grow and sell super-hots next year, and the market getting flooded. My take on what the market will bear is what price you can sell them at and prevent the market being flooded by other growers looking to cash in on the inflated prices. Maybe that's more than your current price, but I think at $10 per pod you'll only have one season of good times before the market is flooded. My two cents.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 11:14PM
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at 1-2$ a pod you will for sure pull in the extra customers and they will be happy if the fella across the way is trying to drain 10$ each out of them he will get less sales and look like a complete ding a ling ...... LOL be sure to Youtube video the Results........if ya need some Bhuts to compete with him just let me know..... grabbing the popcorn (smile) on average US wide i see roughly 30-100$ lb 30 being fair and the fella selling them at 100 will have many pods left over that will either be wasted or sold in a different form pulling less profit and more work...

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 11:32PM
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don't get me wrong there are a few in my area that will pay a easy $5 for them because they are more rare you cant just get them at the local grocery store but i would rather give them extra pods locking in Happy Repeat future customers then have someone walk away thinking they have been robbed.....

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 11:43PM
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Sorry about the rant above.
Ten bucks a pod just sets me off.

I do have a decent sized collection of non bell pepper seeds.
What is rare to one person might be not so rare to another.

Until I lost most of my grow area I was growing about 400 varieties 2X a year(1 plant of each variety , 2 crops a year,all in containers).
S. California has no winter...
I grew a lot of different kinds of peppers in 20 yrs.
I've bought most of my seeds but was trading a LOT too.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 11:46PM
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Mark....I hope I never get on your bad side. I have an uneasy feeling that once your on the "bad" list, you never come off.


    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 11:59PM
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very nice smoke i have been growing for many years myself found the Gardenweb 1 night while searching/buying exotic seeds from across the world for the record i have spent 1000s of $$... so i made a account and seems now they just can't get rid of me i am worse then a aphid ....LOL there are many great people here with lots on knowledge on the ups N downs of Growing ..... And thanks to a couple of guys not gonna mention any names "Ottawa Romy Edymnion and a couple others there will be plenty more seed to go around this year CHEERS!!!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 1:32AM
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Forgot to give myself credit for the countless hours of rototilling bringing in soils and all the additives on top of the weeding fertilizing and watering then final step of harvesting then dealing with the pods to collect the seeds and also drying them so they are 100% Fertile ....(smile) CHEERS to all my friends here at the Garden WEB !!!!!

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 1:51AM
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Gardening isn't the hard part all the time.

I just smoke dried over 60lbs of Manzanos and ground them into 10lbs. of powder along with another 11lbs. of mixed pods and about another 10 of mixed super hots and habaneros.
Talk about tear gas...

Now the fun begins - rubs and powder blends to formulate.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 5:24AM
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Aw yes, that is what I heard- If it is a f1 hybrid then you can't save the seeds. Thanks for clearing that up. :)

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 8:21AM
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Hey Smoke, I know 10 bucks a pod sets you off... that's why I suggested 8 ;-))

And don't be so modest. From what I've seen of partial lists of your collection in the past, it would cause the majority of growers to drool.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 8:51AM
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@don555... Understood. However, novice pepper market flooders probably do not have too much experience growing supers which, even to the pros, can be a challenge. And, as the super hot world goes, by the time they lock on, their peppers would be old news.

@Armageddon... My sentiments EXACTLY. I buy pods from friends all over the Country and have never had an issue. Same for seeds. Actually pods should be considered: Raw,Natural, Organic, unprocessed, seed delivery systems!!!! (*wink*)

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 12:41PM
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I have to agree with smokemaster. I know nuclears require some more care than other peppers, but in the end, they are still peppers.. unless you can only get ten golden peppers from a single plant each year, that doesn't warrant anything near $10 for a single pepper. Probably not making any friends here, but anyone selling them for that much is blatantly taking advantage of their customers, which I do not find to be socially responsible.. You gotta live, I get that, but would you charge an old lady $100 for a bottle of water because you knew she was thirsty and had the money?

I admit that the mysticism of nuclear peppers to the general public, and specialty strains that aren't available everywhere DO justify a higher price. I'm certainly not a professional grower like others here, but is the cost differential that big to justify that big of a price discrepancy per pepper?

I see you can't sell by weight, but equating it to weight.. you get about 40 to 60 peppers per lb? $10 a pepper is ~$500 a lb! I love the superhots, but they aren't caviar or super premium sushi.

I suggest taking a look at chileplants.com for some pricing comparison. I've gotten them from there before, and I think its pretty fair considering costs of operation, etc..

phew! there's my rant for the week. :) hope that helps -E

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 4:43PM
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@chilemilio... I would not charge ANYONE who is thirsty for water. Let's not confuse apples and oranges. Since supers are becoming a "fad" now and people are willing to pay for them, it is nothing but a business transaction. And super hots do not produce millions of pods. AND they are perishable. What are blue jeans worth? Why are the ripped and torn ones commanding excessive prices? Why do people pay those prices? Why is caviar or premium sushi exempt from excessive pricing? They are nothing but fish products. No customer is forced to buy any of the mentioned products, they choose to do so, meaning no one is taking advantage of anyone.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2012 at 6:00PM
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No-one is forced to buy a super-hot pepper and they aren't required for life, but I'd still argue $10 per pepper is ripping people off. If I have an old 10-speed bike that is usually either trashed or maybe sells for $10 or $20 at a garage sale, and someone offers me $100 for it, should I take the $100 or sell it to them for $20 so we both go away happy? I guess it depends on a person's approach to business, I don't know that one way is right or wrong, but if I was recommending a seller to others I'd definitely go with the guy/gal who wasn't taking advantage of a buyer's eagerness or inexperience. I'm not a seller, so I'm looking at things from a buyer's perspective, but of course sellers need us buyers...

    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 2:14AM
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"but if I was recommending a seller to others I'd definitely go with the guy/gal who wasn't taking advantage of a buyer's eagerness or inexperience"

"a buyer's eagerness or inexperience"

That is the thing that drives a strong, stable economy.

I have a can from the 60's it must have been called the TV tuner lubricant!! To think, they made a lubricant/oil product just for a tv tuner dial.?!?!?

on topic with plants- If every single grower knew the myths of bloom fertilizers and all of those uneeded, over charged fertilizer/additives sold in hydro stores, they would no longer sell, thus a lot of jobs would be lost, ect... Those hydro stores make their money on the lack of growers knowledge.

This is very true.

"a buyer's eagerness or inexperience" drives an economy.

I hope that cleared some things up :)

    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 8:18AM
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You can buy small flat rate boxes of fresh supers for about 20 bucks( on the THP). So 1 dollar a pod seems fair to me:) But if people are willing to pay more I say go for it. That is what's so great about free enterprise.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 12:55PM
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homefry319(5b NE)

So weve actually had two people give us "more" money for pods, just the fact that they could find them fresh that wanted to pay more, I dont understand...

I will say my super hots are prob my most expensive thing to grow from germination to in pots(pot/soil cost)

I think for now I will stick to my 1-2 bucks a pod as I grow them mostly for myself we've been bringing them to market because I wanted to see if there was even a market for them(there is)

next year I think I have 40ish super hots planted (so far) but its changed alot

thats not including a full row(33 plants) of bhuts though Im still debating that

    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 1:00PM
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The general populace is stupid and wants to waste their money.

I will give you an anecdote from a friend of mine as way of evidence:

My friend makes replica Friday the 13th Jason hockey masks. He buys good heavy quality 1/8th inch thick sheet plastic to vacuum form the masks off of a hand sculpted master he made. He will then shape/paint/age/etc the mask to match any of the movie incarnations, puts on heavy leather and aged steel buckles, they all around are gorgeous pieces. When he started out, he tried to sell them at a fair price on eBay. Now, his mark of a fair price was basically the raw materials, his time, and a bit of mark up for profit. All in all, he was trying to sell them for about $25 each.

No one would buy one. No matter what kind of pictures he put up, no matter how good the assurances that they were quality pieces, no one would even try one. He started looking around and crappier masks were going for $100+ and were selling like hotcakes. So, he marked his masks up to $75 each, and now he sells them as fast as he can make them.

Same mask, same pictures, same description, but now that they are three times the price, people will buy them.

Only thing we can figure is that people are so conditioned to believe that if it costs more it must be better that they are entirely unwilling to even look at anything that doesn't cost an arm and leg.


For your peppers, I would definitely say to try a weekend where you mark them up to $5 a pod. The trick is to not offer them as just another pepper like the bells and jalapenos, but to market them as novelty nuclear hots. Sell them not as peppers, but as a chance to taste a rare pepper they can't buy in stores that will be a once in a lifetime level of burn.

I think that once you start seeing it as selling an experience instead of just another pepper your conscience will ease up a bit, and you'll sell more to boot because, again, people are stupid.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 2:21PM
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"So weve actually had two people give us "more" money for pods, just the fact that they could find them fresh that wanted to pay more, I dont understand..."

Maybe the customer appreciated the ability to buy "fresh pods" that are simply not available often, and that customer knew what s/he wanted and out of respect, decided to pay you for what he thought was a fair price for what you were offering! Not a stupid customer, but maybe a knowledgeable one? And a respectful one? Hardly stupid at all.

I wonder, do any of the nay-Sayers here tip a waitperson for excellent service? Given the train of thought here, I would have to think... absolutely not. After all, the waitperson is being paid to deliver excellent service right? Then why would anyone nay-Saying here give more money than deserved in the form of a tip? Would tipping be considered stupid?

    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 7:50PM
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I hope not, if so I've been stupid for a long time. When I was a teenager I had a job delivering pizzas. One good tip could change my whole night. It could go from frustrating dealing with none tipping idiots who won't turn their porch light on, to the greatest night ever. I learned then that tipping is definitely the right thing to do. You have to do something incredibly bad for me not to tip you. I'm not rich, so I'm not changing anybody's life. I do however try to leave at least five or six bucks anywhere I'm waited on.


    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 8:13PM
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Funny you say that Tim. A couple of weeks ago, I ordered delivery from a local place because my daughter and her BF wanted pizzas. The bill came to $30.00. I gave the driver $50.00. He drove half way down the driveway, and came back again. He said in his best greeklish... "You give me too much money." To which I responded that I appreciate his service and the food that his pizzeria delivers. He thought I made a mistake and did not try to take advantage of my "error" further cementing the fact that there are good peeps out there too.

He smiled, and thanked me profusely. I was a satisfied and appreciative customer. By no means stupid.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 9:26PM
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Nothing makes me happier than to come to the realization that there are still good/honest people out there in the world. Sometimes it seems like the world has gone to "hell in a hand basket". It's nice to know that isn't always the case.
I won't ignite a religious debate. I'll just say this. God smiles on us all occasionally.


    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 9:42PM
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I have put a lot of thought into this as well. Before this thread started I thought $1 - $2 per pod was fair at a market. If you can focus on marketing the EXPERIENCE of the superhot more so than just a pay $x for a pepper, then you can start charging more. It's rare, it's dangerous and it's a crazy thrill - you're not just selling another vegetable in this case. I have been to zoos where people were lining up to pay money to hold a deadly snake.

Also, Superhots are not easy to grow and yield less seeds than a lot of other chiles, this should make your profit a little more justifiable.

I say make your money, if someone is desperate to try one and doesn't have enough money, cut them a break.

I am talking to a few neighbors about setting up a farm stand on our road, (they all grow something). Always wondering about market value, great topic homefry.

Here is a link that might be useful: PEPPERMEISTER! Hot Pepper Gardening, Recipes and Chile Info

    Bookmark   August 7, 2012 at 10:03PM
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If it was monopoly situation, it would be taking advantage. That being said, the market does work. If prices get too high, then more sellers would get in dropping it down. People don't HAVE to buy superhots. It's a novelty item for many, something to brag to friends about, the reason it can sell for high prices. Is it too high a price? Yes, but should the vendor sell cheaper out of the goodness of their heart? I say no. People can always negotiate if they think the price is too high, and often do at farmer's markets. They are not forced to buy. If you prefer to sell quantity, then by all means lower your prices to sell lots more, although sometimes the high price will give the item "cachet" and actually cause more people to buy it out of the mistaken thought that it's a rare, sought after item. High prices usually get corrected soon enough by competition.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 12:14PM
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homefry319(5b NE)

I guess it would be somewhat a monopoly situation..

Me and him are the only two that sell them, I mean its somewhat depressing whats at the markets here(which is part of the reason we got into it)

It seems a lot of growers "grow what they know" which is very basic hybrids generally Im not sure if we were making a killing of them that others would add it, I know there'd be a few but prob not as many as I think..

he also is in it for the show, hes sells powders and hot sauces, now that I looked him up I know exactly who he is, he saw me selling fresh last year and wanted to buy them "wholesale" for like $3 a pound( I laughed)

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 12:48PM
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That's more like an oligopoly... that being said, you are not just competing against the other guy in the market. You're also competing with all hot pepper growers out there, and also the option to grow their own. You also have to balance that against a potential reputation for overpricing which may affect your sales of other products. But if your prices are too much lower, then people may think your product is inferior. I would suggest you maybe sell $5-8 which makes people think you are giving a deal, and still have a nice profit.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 1:21PM
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homefry319(5b NE)

I think thats part of the problem though, for the average(unknowingly) its pretty hard to determine whats a good price because so few people are actually selling them(over all) I mean a quick google search Ive found 1 place that sold fresh and there priced at $20 for 2oz which would be $160 a lb, other than that all Ive been able to find is forum threads(like this one) saying what fair price should be, or people selling dried pods which the weights are a bit different

I have no intent to "rip people off" Im having a hard time justifying to myself to raise it over $2 per pod maybe this weekend Ill raise it to 3 or 5 just to test the water, in the end I need to do a cost break down, and figure out is it really that much more to grow superhots than my other plants so I can at least justify charging more on paper

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 1:41PM
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HF, you really, honestly cannot go by how much effort it takes you to make something when setting a price for it.

Story time:

Years ago, I worked at Walmart when I was fresh out of college, back in electronics. Some guy asked me what the difference was between brand X and brand Y of television. Me being the smartass responded "Not much really, they were both made by the same Chinese kid." Soon as it was out of my mouth I could just see that write up coming.

He laughed and said "Son, you have no idea. I'm a plant manager at (whatever the clothing plant's name was). We make blue jeans. You know what the difference is between a pair of Wrangler's jeans and the K-Mart brand? We sew a W on the pockets of the Wrangler's." They are *LITERALLY* the exact same pants, the manufacturer simply sews different labels on them, from low end to high end, same stuff.

Also works for things like batteries. From double A's to car batteries, they all get produced at the same plant and they just stick different labels on them. And yet a Duracell costs a heck of a lot more than an EverReady.

Its all about presentation and cultivating an image. And part of that image is the price you set. Just like someone will think the store brand battery must be inferior to the more expensive brand name one, they will think that the guy charging more for his peppers must have higher quality stuff than you do, even if they are exactly the same pepper.

Marking them up can literally be the difference between letting them rot because no one will buy them, and selling everyone you've got. Its counter-intuitive, but its true. Increasing the price can actually increase the demand.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 2:50PM
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homefry319(5b NE)


totally, its funny even how you package things makes its sell more, for example we sell our bells either 2 for a buck or Ill use a quart container and sell them between for $2-3 over all it equals around the same cost, but we always seem to sell more when there simple packaged together

I think this weekend Im going to package them with 2-3 peppers in a bag and sell them for $5 and see how they do

but yeah I know most things that are made in factories are the same thing, some brands "release" them before other

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 3:00PM
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"Increasing the price can actually increase the demand."

Well said, Edymnion.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 3:01PM
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Edymnion is absolutely right.

On the point of your personal time and money spent growing those peppers, you may may be surprised to find out that $10 may be not as far off as you think. Most small time growers spend hours and hours in their gardens tending their plants. If they really added it up, it would probably be more cost effective to work for money, and then buy our food at full price, even at organic prices. Your time is worth money, even if it's at something you enjoy. You also have to include whatever time you do on the business side of selling them as well. So don't feel bad about charging well for them. You likely earned it.

Many of us grow here for personal reasons, since small time growing is not really cost effective in most cases if you put monetary value your spare time. But there is just something about growing your own, or varieties you can't get in the store, or knowing that if the apocalypse comes, you can survive on your own efforts.

But don't short change yourself. Your time, effort and knowledge is worth something. If the market is willing to pay, don't feel bad for charging well for something you enjoy doing.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 4:13PM
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Edymnion and Capoman, my points, exactly.

If the pods do not sell, powders will. Depending on the marketing, so there should be no rotten peppers at all. Dry them and sell them as powder/seasoning.

homefry, 2 to 3 peppers should be at least $8. If not, it may look like you are selling an inferior product as compared to the competitor. Put yourself in the potential customer's shoes... Who would you buy peppers from and why?

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 6:11PM
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I agree. It is just a part of the fun in growing trying to find new ways to save money on growing the crop. For the most part, and I am not saying this in all cases, but Growing in the ground provides the best way to get a profit, provided the crop you grow will work with your native soil, as there is not much up front cost at all. I only have a few in ground rows in my yard, I just dont have the room. I have a lot of my plants in containers so finding new ways to save on soil,fertilizer,ect.. is very important.

I am sure we all heard of the 64 dollar tomato? Well, that is almost what my first year of growing was like :)

Now this year I spent about 70 bucks on- some soilless mix, compost, plant starts,fertilizer,pots.. I used maybe 3 bucks in fertilizer so far this year. I hope I even get 50 dollars worth of peppers :)

Next year I need to just make my own soil for cheaper and start from seed.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 7:12PM
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Wow, certainly a lot of interest/emotion on this topic.

I started off with the response Fair market price: whatever the market will bare.

I was responding to what to charge for a pod at a market where someone was already charging $10 and getting that price. I say go for it.

Let's be clear here. I'm not talking about duping a new pepper enthusiast into paying $x on eBay for seed they could get from a reputable grower for 1/20 the price or free here as a donation. I for one (of many) have shared the heat with many new growers.

Let's face it, 99.9% of people willing to pay $10 for a Bhut pod would turn down an offer of free seed so they can grow their own. They just don't want to spend the energy or time. If they had any motivation they'd search the web and buy 1/4 pounds for $10.

So, if some lazy or brown thumbed person is willing to pay $x times 2 or 4 or 10 over what it cost for something, take it in my humble opinion. Just don't screw a new grower interested in getting into the pepper cult!


p.s. It doesn't directly relate to this topic but if you have some time, 25 minutes, a radio show on economics running this summer on CBC (Canadian NPR equivalent) had an episode on gouging. The last half relieved some interesting results. Sometimes gouging is good ;-)

Here is a link that might be useful: CBC The Invisible Hand - Gouging

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 7:24PM
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I could not agree more Bill. I never thought of "duping" anyone into paying crazy prices. It seems like the customers knew what they were looking for and were willing to pay what they thought was "fair" for what they wanted.

I was glad to see that homefry would not sell to kids who didn't know any better or who would dupe someone into eating the pod. And then posting the video on youboob or something. Kudos hf.

Spreading seeds to another interested newbie is probably the best thing we can all do...

    Bookmark   August 8, 2012 at 8:45PM
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So,someone charging as much as they can ($10 a pod or more) Tips a waiter a lot.
Is extremely generous.


A person who thinks that $10. a pod is extremely high is a person who doesn't tip anything at all,no matter what...

Seems to me a greedy person,guy charging as much as they could for pods, would need a crowbar to pry open their wallet for a tip.

I'd think the guy charging a more realistic price based on their idea of what they want to make profit wise would be more in tuned to tips being a sometimes large part of a food servers income.
As far as tips go,I've worked several years in the food service industry and the waiters and waitresses that get the larger tips have to provide the service that is required to get the tips they do.
Even in a high end place the better waiter or waitress makes more $.
Even a tight wad will crowbar their wallet open if the waiter gave good or better service.

But then again,some people think a tip is mandatory,no matter how good or bad the service was...

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 2:09AM
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Very interesting topic homefry. As ottowapepper put it, very emotional indeed. I would not have imagined there being such a huge variance in stances here on:

-what is fair pricing for the average consumer (chilihead or not)
-what is fair compensation for your efforts growing superhots
-what is fair pricing based on market interest
-what pricing you can get away with until consumers get smart

Definitely let us know how your pricing experiment ends up, and how the $10/pepper person fairs.

Lastly, i'd like to say that I appreciate your interest in using this thread to get an idea of what is fair for you and your customers. that, in itself, says a lot about your character.

kind regards, -E

    Bookmark   August 9, 2012 at 11:40AM
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homefry319(5b NE)

I worked in the service industry for a few year(waiter/bartender) youd be surprised how many people don't understand tipping just in general

I dont think that applies here though, I guess the psychology of it is the same but not really ottawapepper explained it the best, most the people buying from the markets(in general) have absolutely no interest in growing anything, there two main crowds that come to the market, the 1s who buy plants/starters in the beginning of the season and never return(till the next year) and the ones who come just for produce

This weekend Im bagging them two peppers per in little plastic baggies setting them to the side of the table up from more as a novelty and pricing them at $5 and Ill go from there, now this week we most likely will have a double booth they like things looking "full" and the person next to us isn't there so we'll see

The other think Im doing different this week is selling my sweet peppers in quarts rather than 2 for $1 just to see its a visually thing

As for the not selling to kids thing, unless you've ate a supehot raw its hard to explain the feeling, I personally will never sell a product that Ive never eaten raw, and while I actually like the flavor the heat can be somewhat overwhelming, I don't think little kids should be using them for pranks, not to say that adult wont do the same thing, but yeah

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 9:28AM
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I guess I will tell a story now that everyone else is :)

I will make it short;)

I can't stand when I am with someone that wont tip. I always leave 15% when I go out to eat. Because there are so many that do not tip, as a server it can be hard to spot the none tippers. One night I went out to a very nice french restaurant with my friend. I was young it clearly was not good. The waitress for sure thought we were "none tippers". I found going out to eat when your young, it is best to just not even go because they will think you will not tip and who knows what ideas people get or how "carefull" they will be with the food. Opps-10 second rule :O So the jugmentle server came to give us our final bill. I asked for a box to take the other of my 10 dollar french dip, as she said "yea, thats dinner too?" My friend suggested she meant that in a sarcastic way. I did not think so at first being a well behaved, respectable young kid. I was just seeing just how judgmental everyone is :)
So instead of just not leaving a tip, which would have been the kind thing to do :), I gave her 25 dollors and said your going to need this :)

The feeling was unexplainable. A rush of joy came over me to be little someone that was judging.

If I could go back I would have did the right thing- just kept my 25 bucks and spent it on myself, I did not know, give me a break. :)

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 10:05AM
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homefry319, you have mail.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2012 at 10:24AM
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homefry319(5b NE)

so todays market, we had them for $5 two peppers in a bag, I think the amount of people that bought them were pretty close to average, they did seem to draw more attention, also will say no one even questioned the price, they actually more questioned if they wanted them(which is normal)

@ottawapepper sorry Ive got a stack of emails to go through, Ill get you a reply by tomorrow night

    Bookmark   August 11, 2012 at 11:00PM
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lorabell NC(8)

Ok, that's one beautiful set-up. Impressive. I would buy from you any day!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 9:14AM
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homefry319(5b NE)

@lorabell thank you!

so something funny at our second market, where we only go if there are open spots, we were put right next to the guy selling the bhuts for $10 each, they didnt like that we were next to as they didnt sell any fresh pepper

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 2:54PM
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Very impressive set up you have there homefry looks great .

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 3:52PM
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homefry319(5b NE)

@armageddon thank you

    Bookmark   August 12, 2012 at 7:54PM
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homefry319(5b NE)

So funny enough I figured I share here..

We've been talking about selling them as novelties and I will say that I do get a few sales that are but the thing is about 95% of people buying them are chili heads that either know what they are or are more interested in there flavoring.

Now to the price point, so Ive been selling them 2 peppers in a bag for $5, the bag is more for protection from little kids touching them(shown the picture a few posts above)

What Ive noticed from the price is 1 the people who think its "too high" are generally more of the novelty shopper or people who dont really know what it is

Ive also heard many say thats its cheap for them(granted the only other person selling them is the $10 a pepper guy)

But all in all, the most people that are buying them want them for the taste/heat, now Im not selling pounds and pounds a week but they are doing very well and I have multiple people coming back every week...

actually getting excited for next year already as I will have wayyyyy more hot peppers

Thanks again for the discussion guys

    Bookmark   August 21, 2012 at 9:40AM
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homefry319(5b NE)

this is from yesterday/this morning

    Bookmark   August 21, 2012 at 9:57AM
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homefry....It's easy to tell you are a professional, and a honest guy as well. I think your prices are more than fair. It's easy to see what kind of time and effort you put into your display, as well as your product. You will never be able to please everyone. I say as long as you have a clear conscience and your covering your bills, that's all that matters. I took some bhut jolokias to a local produce stand located at a "flea market". This is similar to an organized yard sale where people rent tables and sell whatever they please for you guys who have never heard of "flea markets". I spoke to him a few months ago and he expressed interest in selling any peppers I had left over. I had no intentions of trying to get rich, I just thought if I could pay for my soil and ferts, that would be nice. He's giving me $1.50 a lb for my habanero, chimayo, red savina, and Numex Twilight.When I took him some bhut jolokias, I suggested $1 a pod. He snorted and said he wouldn't be able to sell them for that much. I left him 18 and he said he would try to sell them 2 for $1. I don't really think he knows exactly what they are. I have more than I can use and maybe someone will be able experience something they otherwise would never have been able to. I won't find out if they sold or not until I call him on Friday.


    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 9:54PM
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your garden and display show you put a lot of time into your garden even if you charged $5 a pod its well worth it to the right people.look at some of the prices alone just for seed all across the web there getting seed that can be from nearly any type of pepper .....Cough (Bell)(jalapeno) n such there are alot of fakes out there that have made a bad name for the true growers they look at it as a Free gravy train And make it hard for the True Growers i would feel more comfort knowing i got a full pod With seeds that i could taste to feel the heat and then plant hands down Thumbs up to You.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2012 at 12:28AM
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homefry319(5b NE)

first off thank you guys

@Tim I be hed be surprised, I was hesitant of raising it to $5 for two pods but Im actually really happy with where its at(more on that here in a minute)
p.s if you have a bunch of extra pods, dry them... when your making chili(or something else you want to have a little heat) soak 1 of the pods in warm water for 10 minutes, then wrap it in a mesh bag and throw it in then remove it youll get both the flavor and a bit of the heat from the bhuts without being too much.... also you could make powder than use like 1/4 teaspoon in a few gallons of chili

@Armageddon Definitely, Im going to start bagging and saving my own seed because we sell plants in the spring/early market and I want to make sure if I sell superhots that they get the right plants, especially after I got burned this year I still have 5 plants I have no idea what are exactly, and Im just so over it I dont care

Now a little more on the price point, I got to thinking the other day that the prices actually need to be fairly higher than other peppers and its not because its a novelty but because theses things are actually dangerous used the wrong way, its almost a way to deter some people from just going "oh well whats a dollar or two" making them actually think about spending before they do

thanks again guys

    Bookmark   August 23, 2012 at 10:19AM
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homefry319(5b NE)

soo the guy that was selling them for $10 a pepper dropped it all teh way down to 75 cents a pepper this weekend, not sure if he was over stocked or wasn't selling any because I was cheaper, either way I didnt sell many that day( I didnt change my price)

I dont think Im actually going to drop it much maybe to $3 a bag if I do

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 10:16AM
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My brother is in Omaha and called me from the Aksarban city market on Sunday. He told me some guy was selling really hot peppers for $0.75 apiece and I told him to go back and ask if he chats in the gardenweb forums. I figured it wasn't that other guy since it is a big drop from $10.00 to $.75, but the guy apparently looked at my brother and told him he didn't know what he was talking about...
I'll be visiting him next week and we plan on making a trip to the market. I might just buy something from you.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 1:51PM
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Homefry.. I'm just down the road from omaha, and didn't realize the market had anyone that sold hot peppers! I'm definately going to check it out, could I get a little info on the times and dates please? I also have a fair selection of supers and just plain hots, as well as sweets and roasters. Always willing to share!

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 10:02AM
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homefry319(5b NE)

@HeatMiser yup thats our secondary market, we a "weekly" there so we just get a spot when they have something open, not sure we'll be there or not this week havent got the email(yet) though we may decline it with that big rain(as its been really dry) last week a ton of our tomatoes split really bad

@Oystereater see link for more information on the markets, the Saturday one is our main were at every week

p.s if posting market information is inappropriate mods can remove this portion of the post, Im not here for commercial purposes just another grower/enthusiast sharing and learning

Here is a link that might be useful: Omaha Farmers market

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 11:27AM
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