Do you ever see the guy in the produce section unloading bananas? Apparently, bananas are one of the fastest selling grocery fruit items and it’s a good thing because empty banana boxes experience a second-life within the liquidation industry. No, I haven’t lost my mind…yet. Grocery stores fill empty banana boxes with excess food destined to be liquidated within a secondary market.
Just like customer returned or shelf pull general merchandise, grocery stores have an abundance of retail grocery items that end up being liquidated daily. The term is called salvage food, and before you say yuck, realize that hundreds of millions of dollars worth of GOOD food is pulled from grocery stores weekly.
Why would your nearby grocery store pull food from the shelf? Ah-ha…glad you asked. Food is pulled for various reasons including (1) nearing its sell by date; (2) packaging changes; (3) newer, improved versions available; (4) not selling as quickly as anticipated; (5) packaging errors; and (6) expired. Whew, that’s a lot of reasons!
We all fear a grocery items’ freshness date, but you should read about food dating to fully understand whats going on behind the scenes at your local grocery store. According to Web MD, “product dates don’t give you a true guide to safe use of a product” -the only thing gross about salvage food retailing are the profits! That was a bad pun…sorry. Anyway, savvy entrepreneurs are cashing in on salvage food because the average American family has more month than money these days, and when it comes to grocery bills, shopping at Scratch ‘N Dent stores makes good financial sense.
Maybe you’ve visited a salvage food store? Sometimes referred to as a Scratch n’ Dent grocery store, these salvage food retail outlets are popping up all over the country. How do I know this? Well, I wrote a guide that explains the basic process. Our guide sells on a consistent basis, in fact, Cathy from Boiling Springs, South Carolina bought our salvage food guide back in 2014. I’m happy to announce her new store just opened earlier this month. Cathy’s family run store is called The Banana Box Market.
I’ve had a front-row seat since 2014 as Cathy shared her start-up progress with me via email. A lot of hard work and late nights have gone into this family success story. Do me a favor, click the picture below and check out their Facebook page. While there click “like” so you can follow along with their success.
Cathy receives our weekly product sourcing newsletter, and after our last issue she wrote:
“Nothing like coming home, cleaning up after 4 maniacal kiddos, sitting down to a salvaged dinner and getting to read your newsletter! I have to say we are LOVING our store! We have a full bob-truck load coming in the morning from Silver Dollar sales which we garnished from your last newsletter. I promise to take pictures this time! We sure hope to get a visit from y’all one day so we can show off our little store (well not soo little!)”
How cool is that? I love hearing from our blog readers! Cathy’s store is going great, and so are thousands of other salvage food stores nationwide. Here are a couple of videos from Youtube showcasing two other successful salvage food entrepreneurs, take a look.
Way to go Cathy, and yes, Renee and I would love to stop by your store one day! Please keep emailing about your success.
Our 2020 Liquidators Guide chronicles 12 years of wholesale product sourcing experience and includes my personal black book of direct source contacts! As an industry expert, I'll share the success I've enjoyed along with the mistakes I've made buying and reselling liquidation merchandise.
If you are thinking about buying pallets of liquidation merchandise from a liquidator, broker, or direct from department stores, you need to check out The Liquidators Guide