The Economics of Growing Saskatoons

POSTED IN For Growers, For Members ON 2/16/2016

The presentation “The Economics of Growing Saskatoons” was part of the program of the Northern Michigan Small Farm Conference on Saturday, January 30th, 2016.

Subject matter includes:

  1. What saskatoon berries looks like
  2. What saskatoon bushes looks like
  3. Health benefits of saskatoon berries
  4. Growing requirements
  5. Market opportunities for fresh and processed saskatoons
  6. Costs associated with planting and maintaining a saskatoon orchard
  7. Key business practices for successful growing
  8. Essential business considerations
  9. Business planning concepts
  10. Tax considerations
  11. Insurance considerations
  12. Legal considerations
  13. A financial projection example
  14. An introduction to resources that can help


To download the program presentation, go to: SFC 2016 Econ Saskatoons

We had a good group, with many targeted questions. It was a delight to talk through both the questions for which good answers are available and the questions for which good answers are still being researched. 

What we know is that:

  • People that try saskatoon berries almost always want more saskatoon berries
  • Growers with even minimal marketing experience can sell out of their fruit
  • Working together through the Saskatoon Berry Institute of North America we are building a larger market, and working on ways to satisfy orders larger than many farms can fill by themselves

If you are already growing saskatoons, please consider joining the Institute.

If you are considering growing saskatoons, please talk the Institute and our members.

And Remember:

Eat saskatoon berries!

How to Encourage Pollinating Bees and Increase Your Harvest

POSTED IN For Growers ON 2/12/2016

Rufus Isaacs presented “Support Your Local Pollinators” at the Saskatoon breakout session of the Northwestern Michigan Orchard and Vineyard Show on January 13, 2016. This program was part of a “birds and bees’ focus on methods to improve saskatoon berry crop harvests. Rufus discussed how to support native bees through their active seasons, the role and timing of pesticides, and ways to encourage and increase native bee populations around saskatoon orchards.

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Local pollinators: Wild bees that are beneficial to harvest

To see the complete PowerPoint presentation, as a pdf, click on this hyperlink: Isaacs – support your local pollinators 2016 – OV Saskatoon Session

Topics covered include:

  • Common wild bee identification techniques
  • Nesting habits
  • Seasonality
  • Effectiveness of pollen deposition
  • Wanna-bees – other non-bee insects that are pollinators
  • Creating and maintaining good pollinator habitat
  • Insecticide effect on pollinators by trade name
  • Ways to minimize insecticide effect on pollinators

Great job Rufus!  This is exactly what our growers needed!