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Old May 7, 2013   #29
Fred Hempel
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Sunol, CA
Posts: 2,323

I like the music analogy. Let me take it one step further. Independent breeders are like garage bands, or unknown YouTube performers who are trying to create music. They spend considerable time and energy working on their craft, and occasionally they get paid pocket change or drinks for their efforts.

Discussing how to make money being a garage band is a frustrating exercise. Although many garage bands are creative -- the best case scenario for making money is probably limited to becoming a "cover" band and playing expensive weddings (something tangential to actually creating music).

Motivations for independent breeding are varied and I would guess money is not a top priority for most. However, I would guess that some of us do dream of creating a tomato that somehow opens doors that are typically closed. But, our chances of making money breeding are probably about as high as being the next Justin Bieber (a YouTube discovery by record execs, for those who don't know).

I don't really think there is a formula, although Travis' suggestions are reasonable.

Originally Posted by bower View Post
The OP tomato seed market has a lot of similarities to the present music industry. The product can be obtained free and replicated at will without any payment to the creator. The up side is that people who really appreciate the product but don't have money at the time can enjoy it, and also raise the profile of the product because of their enthusiasm. Although there isn't a material return from those users, it builds reputation which is valuable to the professional breeder in the long haul. Obviously though, the overall returns are not at all equal to those for hybrid seeds, and never will be.

I like your model, Steve. When I look at your site and see that a percentage is returned to the breeder, it makes me want to buy the seed from you, if I can't from the originator.
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