Where To Get Large Qty Organic Ingredients

Business By acookieobsession Updated 11 May 2008 , 12:36am by BellaBabyCakes

acookieobsession Posted 16 Mar 2008 , 9:56pm
post #1 of 15

Hi there.

I am delving into the organic/vegan cake market and I am trying to reduce the price a bit. I would like to find large quantities of things like sugar and flour. So that it will not be so expensive.

My Dh works at Earth Fare (like whole foods) and even with the discount it is too expensive. Not to mention, how many 2 lb bags of 10x do I need to buy at once! I would wipe out the store each time.

So I am going to scope out the locals for eggs, but flour and sugar are going to be the problem.

Thanks for any input.

14 replies
iamlis Posted 16 Mar 2008 , 10:04pm
post #2 of 15

Can I just ask this...If you are organic/vegan won't you need to charge more for that luxury to your customers, so that MIGHT help off set your expenses..just a thought! LOL! I bake alot of kids party cakes, so for THEIR sakes I buy organic milk, eggs, butter and ANYTHING I can get my hands on for THEIR sake, but I just charge more now. Hope that helps!

acookieobsession Posted 16 Mar 2008 , 10:15pm
post #3 of 15

Well yes I know I will need to charge more, but I don't want to be unreasonable. I like to give the best value I can, while still providing the great product.

I just thought there might be some great places to buy bulk items.

thanks Julia

foxymomma521 Posted 16 Mar 2008 , 10:17pm
post #4 of 15

Amazon.com has lots of bulk organic foods, but I don't know what the price is compared to what you are already paying...

leily Posted 16 Mar 2008 , 10:26pm
post #5 of 15

Have you spoke with the manger of the store? There are some places that you can place your order with them, then they will order it with their regular order (so you don't wipe out their shelves) and it comes in 2-3 times a week with their order.

If they can order more then they get a better price and may pass it on to you!! If you are a guarenteed sale they may reduce your price since you are ordering in bulk.

It can't hurt to ask! You may end up with a box of 20 pkgs of 2lb bags of sugar, but at least their shelf is still full for other customers.

rits Posted 17 Mar 2008 , 6:52pm
post #6 of 15

Hi, you might try UNFI (http://www.unfi.com/) - they are a wholesaler of organic & natural products. Yes, you have to go thru the sign-up process & you do have to buy in some larger quantities. However, most items you'd buy from them have a long shelf-life (sugar, flour, etc.), and all you need is some good storage space...

I used to buy all of my organic ingredients retail, and it was really hurting my bottom line. Many people are afraid to buy in bulk (wholesale), but you would not BELIEVE how much it saves you over the long term! Good luck icon_smile.gif

iamlis Posted 17 Mar 2008 , 7:18pm
post #7 of 15

GREAT NEWS! Thanks rits!

acookieobsession Posted 17 Mar 2008 , 7:29pm
post #8 of 15

Thank you for the information. I was all excited until I called for the account. Unfortunately they do not deliver residential (licensed home bus in NC). I could pick up in ATL (3 hrs away) but they require a monthly purchase of $350 for pickups and $500 for deliveries.

Thanks anyway, perhaps when i get more business.

Have a super day.

Julia

rits Posted 18 Mar 2008 , 7:19am
post #9 of 15

Sorry about that - I didn't think about the home baker aspect.

You might contact some local restaurants or caterers who you know are focused on organics & ask if they are willing to let you "piggy back" on their orders. I actually cold-called about 40-50 caterers in my area last year, and I found someone who now splits orders with me (!)

I also get my organic eggs from a local farm - I called a bunch of them, too, until I found someone who didn't mind dropping off a relatively small amount to me on their regular delivery route.

Basically, you just have to have no shame icon_wink.gif Good luck to you.

acookieobsession Posted 9 May 2008 , 12:20am
post #10 of 15

I just found out the greatest news! UNFI sponsors a buying club program. So I emailed them and they sent me a list of all the clubs in NC. I just spoke with the lady for the club here and what a GREAT deal!

For instance, organic 10x and organic granulated sugar are 1/2 the price that I was paying in the store. The 10x is cheaper than the bakers and chefs in sam's.

Now I am off to find fair trade chocolate....any hints on that?


HTH

Julia

Petit-four Posted 9 May 2008 , 1:13pm
post #11 of 15

Thank you so much for this topic! I called UNFI and they were very helpful. icon_smile.gif

Rhienn Posted 10 May 2008 , 3:23am
post #12 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by acookieobsession

I just found out the greatest news! UNFI sponsors a buying club program. So I emailed them and they sent me a list of all the clubs in NC. I just spoke with the lady for the club here and what a GREAT deal!

For instance, organic 10x and organic granulated sugar are 1/2 the price that I was paying in the store. The 10x is cheaper than the bakers and chefs in sam's.

Now I am off to find fair trade chocolate....any hints on that?


HTH

Julia




Let me know if you find wholesale qantities of fair trade (natural - not dutched) cocoa powder. It's become a major ordeal... I can't find source for the life of me.

BellaBabyCakes Posted 10 May 2008 , 10:58pm
post #13 of 15

Interesting you should ask! I used to work in Sales Support for the largest organic dairy cooperative in the country (still work for them, just not in SS), you can probably figure out WHERE I work icon_wink.gif. And my job was to introduce new stores and food services to our products via distributors and answer questions about organics.

One of the ones I always recommended if someone didn't want to do a buying club or minimum order through UNFI was to offer Azure Standard. You are able to buy just one case of product if needed and the minimums are small.

azurestandard.com

The biggest frustration for some smaller businesses was that UNFI rarely speaks to the little guy, and this is where Azure comes in. Good luck!

Chef_Stef Posted 10 May 2008 , 11:31pm
post #14 of 15

I just found 20 lb bags of organic sugar at...Costco icon_biggrin.gif , and I've used Azure for flour in the past (but not for cakes, duh, why didn't I think of that!), but I have to buy a minimum $ amount to have it delivered, so we got away from that since we get our regular groceries at a local organic market.

I've found organic flour off and on at my local grocery stores (Albertson's, etc), but it's usually only 10 lb bags, so I just stock up when I can. If I can't find organic I look for all-natural, but I can't recall the name.

I get organic milk, sour cream, eggs, etc at my local grocery or organic market, but yeah baby they cost a lot more! Like almost $4/dozen for eggs. We're actually getting chickens again (if not for cakes, then at least for US) for fresh eggs. I don't usually get butter organic because of the cost and scarcity. My prices aren't cheap for this area, but they are where they need to be for me to use these ingredients.

BellaBabyCakes Posted 11 May 2008 , 12:36am
post #15 of 15

I am able to get most of my liquid dairy and eggs at employee discount or free (short coded) and I've never had to think about the cost! It's these sort of subjects that give me the heads up on how difficult it could be.

Another good one is Tree of Life. They have smaller minimums then UNFI but carry most of what they do, they are a subsidiary distributor. A lot of my customers were able to order things by the case through their local co-op as well. Good luck!

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