Thanks to FMC’s Research Director Alex Canepa for sharing this article about Farmigo’s online market demise.
Here are some quotes from the article, most from Farmigo CEO Benzi Ronen, that I think should be discussed, challenged or simply noted, depending on how you see the scaling up or technological solution conversation in regards to family farming.
Silicon Valley is sometimes guilty of hubris, thinking we can disrupt an industry overnight and do it better,” he says.
He’s confident Farmigo will be just fine, because it still has its CSA software business, which has 300 to 400 customers, depending upon the season, and revenue.
Is there a need for what we’ve been working on? There is definitely a need for it – you can debate, I think, the magnitude of the need. How many customers are willing to pay a premium for a better product?
We are currently looking for partners that can service our customers once the Summer ends. We have also sent all our customers in each region a list of the producers they love so that they can purchase directly from them – Seattle-Tacoma, Greater New York and Bay Areas.
We’re looking at it broader than a CSA platform. Right now we’re servicing CSAs very effectively, but we now we have experience working with a lot broader array of farms than just CSAs. We were working with all kinds of farms, fishermen, bakers and food artisans that wanted to get their food to market. Some of them were CSAs, and some of them were even using our software, but the majority weren’t. We feel that we now know better what software tools we can give all of them, so they can sell direct to consumer if they want, to food hubs if they want, to wholesalers and distributors, to retailers, to farm stands, farmer’s market.
The industry as a whole has grown significantly, but it’s still incredibly inefficient to source this stuff — and those are the kinds of problems I know we can fix. As a software guy, as a guy who’s been building business to business software applications with SAP that connects businesses and allows them to trade more effectively together, to trust one another and to have transparency, to me that’s a massive opportunity
Other posts on food hubs.