Mar­ket to go on­line

Shepparton News - Country News - - NEWS -

Re­duc­ing cos­metic waste and the dif­fi­cul­ties of work­ing with whole­salers and re­tail­ers are the rea­sons be­hind the foun­da­tion of a new on­line farm­ers’ mar­ket.

Known as Me­gaFresh, the on­line mar­ket is be­ing es­tab­lished to al­low David to com­pete with Go­liath.

‘‘Me­gafresh al­lows small busi­nesses and small farm­ers to com­pete with big com­pa­nies,’’ Me­gaFresh founder Alex Ste­fan said.

‘‘What’s hap­pen­ing at the minute is prod­ucts that are on our web­site are sent to our ware­house — so when trad­ing be­gins we can de­liver to the cus­tomer and pick and pack on be­half of the seller,’’ he said.

‘‘That’s why we call it a farm­ers’ mar­ket — as the con­sumer can get all their prod­ucts in one box.’’

With the big su­per­mar­kets very spe­cific on what they buy and through his own ex­pe­ri­ences as owner of Feast Cold Pressed Juice, Mr Ste­fan said Me­gaFresh needed to hap­pen.

‘‘There’s a few rea­sons (why). When sell­ing to whole­salers there is so much cos­metic waste.

‘‘A grape grower in the North­ern Ter­ri­tory never picked his grapes be­cause Wool­worths said they were too small.

‘‘I took some for my­self and thought they were great.’’

He said there was also a per­sonal rea­son be­hind the new mar­ket.

‘‘I run Feast Cold Pressed Juice and I know how dif­fi­cult it is deal­ing with re­tail­ers and whole­salers.’’

De­spite trad­ing still a few weeks away, the feed­back Mr Ste­fan has re­ceived has been pos­i­tive.

‘‘We are prob­a­bly two to four weeks away from trad­ing. It all de­pends on the prod­ucts we have — we would like to fill all the cat­e­gories on the web­site.

‘‘We have started sign­ing up sell­ers and we have over 100 prod­ucts listed or in the process of be­ing listed so far.

‘‘The gen­eral pub­lic have been hugely re­cep­tive. There has been a lot more buy­ers than sell­ers, who I think might be miss­ing the point.

‘‘Con­sumers al­ready want to buy di­rect, but farm­ers and man­u­fac­tur­ers are not un­der­stand­ing this.

‘‘One of the big points is that po­ten­tial sell­ers will av­er­age 20 to 40 per cent more af­ter our fees through Me­gaFresh than they will when sell­ing to whole­salers.’’

Mr Ste­fan has high hopes for Me­gaFresh, and said the mar­ket could be to food and gro­ceries what Ama­zon was to the book in­dus­try.

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