商业 - 科技


Beth Kowitt 2014年08月07日






    Fresh Directs和亚马逊在人口密集的城市地区才能如鱼得水,但罗内恩相信他的模式在郊区也能运转良好,诸如教堂、学校、高尔夫俱乐部这样的取货点也很容易找到。Farmigo最近把业务范围扩张到了新泽西州北部和韦斯切斯特地区,并以每月30个的速度增加社区配送点。



    Farmigo’s average order size is up to $38 from $15 a year and a half ago, in large part because the startup keeps adding new products (such as fish, and soon, fresh pasta). There’s now enough variety that one could live solely on Farmigo’s offerings. One of Ronen’s employees has been doing just that for months at a cost of about $5 a meal, and Ronen just signed on for what is internally called the “Farmigo Challenge.”

    Ronen acknowledges that the pricing is still prohibitive for some—an organic cantaloupe costs $6.50—but the more he can improve the efficiencies for the farmer by increasing their business, the better the price tag for the customer.

    Farmigo started out as the maker of software for an online marketplace where consumers could find and sign up for CSAs. But Ronen says it was a confusing user experience because the sign-up and payment system differed for each offering. Farmigo then evolved into a place where users could order online from any farm, and the farmer would deliver to a pick-up location. That had its challenges because sometimes farmers would run into logistical hiccups and miss the drop-off. “We realized we really needed to get into operational side,” Ronen says.

    While the company continues to sell its CSA software, it also now has free offerings that help its farms know when to hire, its warehouses know what to pack, and its drivers know what to deliver. Ronen says that its farmers walk away with 60-70% of the sale, the community organizer who runs the drop-off gets 10%, and Farmigo gets the rest. Normally a farmer gets about 30% of the sale when they sell to wholesale, with about 50% going to the retailer. Another advantage advantage for farmers in the Farmigo system, according to Ronen: They’re also paid immediately directly by the consumer, rather than the standard 30-60 days.

    The Fresh Directs and Amazons need the density of cities to function, but Ronen believes his model works well in the suburbs where pick-up locations–churches, schools, golf clubs–are easy to come by. Farmigo recently expanded into northern New Jersey and Westchester and is adding about 30 drop-off sites a month.

    He views Farmigo as the virtualization of a food cooperative and a good solution for locations where it might be hard to justify a supermarket. “We’re not just sending food out there and hoping people are going to buy it,” he says. “We’re sending out what was pre-ordered and pre-purchased. The pickup is at one location so it’s very portable and cost effective to do delivery.”

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