How will farmers thrive in 2012 and beyond? being a consumer as well as a farmer

Not only grape growers but farmers in general seem to be finding success by a new mantra “understanding of what customers want to [eat or] drink, what they want to hear, and what they’re willing to pay” (The New Yorker, November 21, 2011, “Sacred Grounds”) The new twist is the incorporation of social media and displaying the niche of the farmer . Not only the needs and wants of the consumer, but farmers are designing their marketing campaigns from a consumer’s point of view. Spinning a new story about the crop or showcasing a new attribute, for example the way the Pistachio and Pomegranate have garnered fame.  Following this new mantra can open the door for productive conversation, higher sales, and long term contracts.

Turning Pomegranates into a celebrity

Coffee has seen a cult status reemergence where farms and growers are being featured on the coffee labels. Coffee companies such as Stumptown , place particular coffee producers on their labels because they realize that savvy consumers will search out their product. Regarding other crops, ranches, farms, and growers are gaining a following or a fandom surrounding their product, farming techniques,  and story.  Similarly to the vineyard designates and particular vineyards that are highly sought after because of the prestigious fruit, scarcity of it, reputation, and infamous terroir.

Beautiful coffee "cherries"

Competition is as fierce as ever being a farmer, higher input costs, substantial quantities of product on the market, as well as superb quality across the board. However, there are still those people out there sneaking by with a sub-par product .  Take Cabernet Sauvignon  for instance, the grape market is flooded with Cabernet Sauvignon, but when one peers into the intricacies of it, there is a high supply of average Cabernet Sauvignon and a short supply of the primo stuff. i,.e. hillside or Rutherford bench. Finding new methods to stand out from the pack is essential to surviving this economy.

There is an appearance of new producers from non-traditional backgrounds, for example: women farmers and new enthusiasts ,showcasing their prestige and developing clever marketing campaigns. With passion and a knowledge of the market , quality products are being distinguished from the milieu of the barrage of products within the industry.Showcasing your passion and the TLC of tending to your crop , consumers empathize as well as adopt  your mission and your ideals.

Ladies giving TLC to their crops

Some of the new women farmers on the scene are Bossy Acres, Thomson Vineyards, and Aida Batlle  . Whether it is high-end Chardonnay, infamous micro greens and organic produce, and extraordinary Salvadoran coffee (she even has hillside coffee farms too), these producers are experiencing success with using various social media platforms to communicate to consumers, interact with actual and potential clients, showcase their story and point of view , and above all delivering a high quality product.

Returning back to grape growing which is so pertinent to us, we can’t wait to taste the wine made from our grapes and receive our positive and negative feedback to better farm it next year, continual improvement that’s key to an already flooded market . One must have a palette as well as calluses on their hands, knowing where the consumer is spending their money as well as what type of wine attracts them. For us , the consumer is namely the winemaker and the clients that purchase the $125/bottle  and we have to be able to talk to the talk and walk the walk to secure our sales in the current state of the economy and market.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s