Crunching the numbers

Sonya crunched the season’s numbers this week, and the results are below in an e-mail she sent off today:

Hello Members!

As we all know (we sound like a broken record, sorry!) it wasn’t the greatest season here at the farm.  But, overall loss was a lot less than we expected.  We base all these numbers on full share membership.  If half share members want more information, I would be happy to send out weekly value totals.
A full share for 2009 costs  = $475
The total produce value of your shares this season = $426.25
Investment loss = $48.75
Not too bad compared to what John and I were expecting.  Last season members received over $80 more than they payed for, so returning members have actually still gained.  We are going to work very hard to make next season a gain too.
How do we come up with these numbers?  I keep a record of everything you receive each week.    Each product has a value.  For instance, carrots sell at market for $2 per lb.  You are “charged” that amount as well.  Since it was a bad season for tomatoes for everyone in Maine, they were receiving quite a high value at market:  $5 per pound for the entire season, when normally just early tomatoes would catch that price, and the price would lower to $3.50 per pound.  Most of our garlic was huge this year, and we sell it for $9 per pound, so that was catching quite a price as well (though we have never sold garlic at the market; we get our price through MOFGA’s price list).  For other produce, like greens and salad mix, we’ve noticed that our prices are much lower than what you could get them for, even from Hannaford.  Kale/Chard and any bunched green is $2 per bunch, and our salad mix is $4 per 1/2 pound.  Lettuce is also $2 per head.  So even though a small amount of our produce was more expensive this year, we think that it rounds out with our lower greens prices (and we all know you got a ton of greens this year!)  We never had any really high value weeks this season, like last seasons high of over $40 for one week.  Our highest week this season was week 12 at $31.25 and our lowest was week 1 at $13.50.

It is important to us to be totally open and transparent with these numbers.  If anyone would like more information, I’d be happy to send it to you.

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