Are Greenhouse Vegetables Right For Your Business?

Getting Started With Greenhouse Vegetables

I’ll be the first to admit it. I thought vegetables were a fad. When the recession hit back in 2008 and we started to see consumer interest in growing their own herbs and vegetables, it seemed to me like a nice but short-lived sales bump. Growers and retailers already in the market would sell a few more starter plants. Consumers would get the feel-good experience of growing their own food rather than spending money at the grocery store each week — before growing tired of it.

I was wrong.
 
Demand has continued to grow. And not just vegetables, but herbs and fruits as well. As it turns out, home-grown produce taps into a couple of trends that go beyond the state of the U.S. economy.

For one, it’s local. Whether growing it themselves or buying it at the farmer’s market on Saturday, an increasing number of people like the idea of food that’s not produced on a big farm somewhere far away. Local produce supports local business, and, theoretically at least, is better quality than produce shipped hundreds or even thousands of miles.

Next, it’s healthy. Despite what you see in the stats about obesity — or perhaps because of what you see in the stats about obesity — more and more people actually do want to eat healthfully these days.

Vegetables: A Whole New Business

And, increasingly, growing produce — not just starter plants for consumers but actual fruits and vegetables that you can harvest and sell — can be an interesting fit for greenhouse growers with some downtime between ornamental crops. You may not be growing a crop between the time you finish spring and start fall, but you still have that same overhead to pay for. For some of you, producing produce may be a very viable way to add revenue and make the end-of-the-year profit line a bit healthier.

Is this a niche that’s right for your operation?

It’s not as simple as adding a new petunia or calibrachoa, but we’re ready to help you understand some of the decisions you’ll face to make a go of it in vegetable production. Which crops and varieties make sense for you? What new insects and diseases will you need to know? Will you need to make changes to your structures and equipment? What will you need to know about food safety and handling regulations? And where exactly will you sell the produce you grow?

We’re here to help. Our eNewsletter, Getting Started With Greenhouse Vegetables, will help you understand the answers to a lot of these questions. Over the next several months, we’ll cover all of these topics with research, stories from ornamental growers who have made the jump in to produce, Q&As with experts, and a lot more.

We have some unique resources to work with. Greenhouse Grower has been the market leading brand for ornamentals growers for nearly 30 years. And two of our sister brands — American Vegetable Grower and Productores de Hortalizas — have devoted decades to helping growers produce greenhouse vegetables both here in the U.S. and in Mexico. The editors from all of these brands are lending their expertise, and together, we’ll try to help you make an educated decision about growing greenhouse vegetables.
 
Take a look and see if produce makes sense for you. It’s certainly not for everybody, but it may just be the right niche for your business.

Leave a Reply

One comment on “Are Greenhouse Vegetables Right For Your Business?

  1. The newsletter is an excellent idea. I would go a little further though: vegetables could be a lot more than just an in-fill product between ornamental crops. Vegetables most likely will be one approach to making greenhouse growing profitable again. Reserve greenhouse space out of your total acreage for year round vegetable growing. It will help in establishing a loyal clientele, expecting a steady flow, of quality product. They will come back for more translating in a steady flow of income to the grower.

More From Business Management...
If your Wi-Fi is truly secure, your staff can help customers on the sales floor starting today

March 25, 2017

What Marketing Approach Can Attracts the Most Customers to Your Greenhouse?

Inc.com surveyed more than a thousand customers to find out which marketing strategies worked best to entice them to try out a new business

Read More
Leanne Kenealy, Hoffman Nursery

March 24, 2017

New Horticulturist At Hoffman Nursery Will Focus On Developing New And Better Products

Leanne Kenealy, who brings great experience in plant evaluation, says introducing consumers to new plants can hopefully generate renewed excitement for gardening.

Read More
Aspabroc Broccolini Sakata Vegetables Feature

March 22, 2017

Growing Tips for Sakata Vegetables’ ‘Aspabroc’ Broccolini

‘Aspabroc’ resembles a broccoli raab with an asparagus stem, has a mild taste, and requires little growing space.

Read More
Latest Stories
If your Wi-Fi is truly secure, your staff can help customers on the sales floor starting today

March 25, 2017

What Marketing Approach Can Attracts the Most Customers…

Inc.com surveyed more than a thousand customers to find out which marketing strategies worked best to entice them to try out a new business

Read More
Leanne Kenealy, Hoffman Nursery

March 24, 2017

New Horticulturist At Hoffman Nursery Will Focus On Dev…

Leanne Kenealy, who brings great experience in plant evaluation, says introducing consumers to new plants can hopefully generate renewed excitement for gardening.

Read More

March 21, 2017

How Greenhouse Vegetable Growers Can Prepare for a Prod…

The United Fresh Produce Association is holding a Recall Ready Workshop in April that is designed to help growers properly manage a recall, from liability to communications.

Read More
Greenhouse Loyal Customer

March 16, 2017

How Brand Enthusiasts Can Be Your Most Loyal Customers

A marketing expert shares three core principles that direct-to-consumer companies can follow to create brand enthusiasts.

Read More

March 14, 2017

Expanded Customer Footprint, E-Commerce, Succession Key…

Costa Farms' acquisition of indoor foliage producer Delray Plants rocked the industry, but the story behind Delray Plants' sale is the same as for many growers struggling with succession planning. For Costa Farms, the strategic purchase expands its customer footprint and also fast tracks its foray into e-commerce.

Read More
Steve Black and Bridget Behe

March 14, 2017

AmericanHort’s First-Ever CareerUP Event to Take Place …

CareerUP is a day-long workshop that is designed to provide the skills, information, and inspiration that young professionals need to advance their careers, love their jobs, and help the industry grow.

Read More
Horticultural Research Institute Logo

March 12, 2017

Horticulture Research Institute Rings in New Year With …

More than 150 industry professionals attended a reception at MANTS, which introduced new officers and celebrated the more than $190,000 in donations for HRI research fostering business-building knowledge for the horticultural industry.

Read More

March 10, 2017

Costa Farms Expands With Purchase of Indoor Houseplant …

Costa Farms annnounced March 10 that it has acquired Delray Plants, one of the leaders in the indoor houseplant industry. The two operations are committed to the same values, principles, and goals to grow the industry, and will fit well together to accomplish this, say Randy Gilde, CEO of Delray Plants, and Joche Smith, CEO of Costa Farms.

Read More
Startup Stock Photos

March 10, 2017

Passionate Horticulture Writers Wanted To Join Our Team

GreenhouseGrower.com is looking for people to join our team and submit original content to our website about floriculture and greenhouse production of emerging crops.

Read More

March 7, 2017

Local Florists Celebrate Women’s Day and SAF Prom…

Florists across the U.S. are celebrating International Women's Day, March 8, and raising awareness for non-profit organizations. The Society of American Florists is raising its own awareness of what happens when women receive flowers with a new video for International Women's Day.

Read More
Egon and Laina Molbak

March 7, 2017

American Floral Endowment Receives Major Contribution t…

AFE recently announced that it has received a $100,000 contribution from Egon and Laina Molbak, the founders and long-time owners of Molbak’s Garden + Home outside of Seattle.

Read More
Ken and Deena Altman

March 7, 2017

Altman Plants in Escrow to Purchase EuroAmerican Propag…

Ken Altman, a co-owner of Altman Plants based in Vista, CA, has confirmed that the operation is currently in escrow to purchase EuroAmerican Propagators, the Bonsall, CA-based young plant and finished plant grower that filed Chapter 7 Bankruptcy on Jan. 23, 2017. Ken and Deena Altman are co-owners of Altman Plants and The Plug Connection, along with their son Matthew, who has recently bought into the family business. The 55 acres of land and all of the facilities on it, which were previously owned by Jerry Church, a partner in EuroAmerican Propagators, are part of the purchase agreement currently in escrow, Altman says. However, it would not be absorbed by Altman Plants, which in 2016 was number 3 on Greenhouse Grower’s Top 100 Growers list with more than 11 million square feet of environmentally controlled greenhouse production, 62 acres of shade production, and 400 acres of outdoor field production. Altman Plants’ property […]

Read More

March 2, 2017

Greenhouse Grower State of the Industry Whitepaper Avai…

This year’s survey featured a record 975 respondents and tackled topics such as sales trends, technology, major industry challenges and opportunities, and much more.

Read More
Greenhouse Grower State of the Industry Webinar

February 27, 2017

State of the Industry Webinar Available for On-Demand V…

The half-hour presentation includes an analysis of Greenhouse Grower’s 2017 State of the Industry survey, along with insights from horticulture industry leaders.

Read More
North Creek Tim McGinty Steve Castorini

February 24, 2017

AmericanHort Names New Board Members and Officers for 2…

The new board members are Steve Castorani of North Creek Nurseries, Tom Hughes of Hughes Nursery and Landscaping, and Cole Mangum of Bell Nursery.

Read More
EAGL Graduates

February 22, 2017

Emerging Industry Leaders Earn Business Management Cert…

Dr. Charlie Hall, Ellison Chair for International Floriculture at Texas A&M University, recently announced the graduation of the fourth cohort of the elite Executive Academy for Growth & Leadership (EAGL) program for nursery and greenhouse growers.

Read More
2016 Top 100 Growers List

February 18, 2017

Top 100 Growers Survey for 2017 Is Now Open!

Operations with more than 400,000 square feet of environmentally controlled production are eligible to take the survey, which only takes a few minutes to complete.

Read More

February 17, 2017

How to Keep Customers Coming Back With Top-Notch Servic…

A recent article on Forbes.com outlines seven ways organizations can take their customer service from good to great and beyond.

Read More