If you’re a green thumb with limited space, microgreens may be right up your alley. With a short growing time, a high return for a small investment, and a growing market to take advantage of, microgreens are taking the spotlight at farmer’s markets across the country.
What Are Microgreens?
Microgreens are small plants grown for about two weeks before being harvested for sale and eating. Microgreens include both vegetable plants and herbs, so you can pick the specific plants you prefer. Because many microgreens have spicy or strong tastes, chefs often use them to add flavor to salads or cooked dishes. The nutrient density of microgreens is much higher than for traditional produce, making them an in-demand item for health-conscious restaurants, home juicers, and local nutrition-savvy consumers.
Why Grow and Sell Microgreens instead of Regular Vegetables and Fruits?
Growing microgreens takes up far less space than a traditional garden or farm plot, so they make sense if you’ve got limited space. The growing process is a lot shorter as well, so you can harvest and cash out more quickly. You can grow microgreens on your own schedule, and can scale your operation up or down quickly.
What Does It Take to Start Selling Microgreens?
Expect to spend $1000 to $3000 on supplies for a moderate-scale microgreen growing operation. You’ll need an enclosed space to grow your microgreens, whether that’s an outdoor greenhouse, an enclosed patio, or an indoor space with metal shelving and grow lights. Seeds, soil, containers and utility bills are things you need topay for on a recurring basis to keep producing crops of microgreens. Most growers start out producing about 10-15 trays of microgreens a week and adjust as needed.
You might need to check into your local laws about selling edible plants. Some areas require permits or licenses to produce and sell food items. You might need to package your microgreens in a specific way or sell them as bulk items to avoid breaking any local processing and labeling laws.
How Much Can You Make with Microgreens?
Selling microgreens can bring in a few thousand dollars each month if you’re consistent with your production and develop a regular clientele. You can sell at markets or grocery stores, or offer microgreens directly to restaurants. As a general estimate, you can make about $20-25 per pound of microgreens.