Why we shouldn’t hate on myfarm
Myfarm is done. I first heard about this fleetingly a couple weeks ago, but no one really knew what happened. Just that they were gone, something about internal problems. Went to their website. nothing. Tried searching around the interwebs, but to no avail. A couple days ago I got forwarded this blog post with the attached message “let me know if you need any help” from one Fred Bove. Very nice gesture to be sure.
As someone who has also recently started a new kind of vegetable delivery service, I have some thoughts on the demise of myfarm, and the surprisingly vitriolic words that are being thrown around concerning this once greatly esteemed business.
Myfarm was started by a couple who had a really great idea. The idea was to put farms in peoples backyards, and with the food grown, feed the city. To get this idea going, and see if people were interested, they put up 50 flyers around the city. immediately they were deluged with response. The chronicle wrote about them. The NY times wrote about them. They got more response, and ultimately collapsed under the pressure. I volunteered with myfarm a couple times when they were first starting out, but haven’t spoken to Trevor in a while, but from what I can tell, they just grew too fast.
1. When I started forageSF, I thought that the best thing that could happen was to have 100 people sign up immediately. I would be able to support myself foraging ( and maybe even start a bit of a savings account). When that didn’t happen, I was really disappointed. A couple people signed up, but as I jealously watched myfarm get bigger, my business grew very slowly. I see now that was the best thing that could have happened. The amount I have learned in the time since the first CSF box went out is amazing. What people want (surprisingly, its less variety of foods rather than more), logistics (how to collect and distribute very perishable food in a two window), customer service (how to not piss people off). These lessons have all been learned without my business eating itself because I’ve had the luxury of moving relatively slowly . If, as I desired, had 100 people sign up the first month, I probably wouldn’t have been been doing what Im doing at this point.
2. I think people had an unreasonable expectation of myfarm (from what the post conveys). Myfarm was a really good idea. A revolutionary idea, to feed people from urban production. Rather than the cities being vacuums for rural production, we would sustain ourselves, and have nice backyard gardens to boot. It was such a good idea in fact that people signed up immediatly….I can’t think anymore about this at the moment, but I feel for Trevor. He tried to do something really interesting, and put a great idea out into the world, he tried to do something totally unique, so give him a break.