Craigslist: The New Agricultural Marketplace?

My brother Ryan checks Craiglist daily for the latest farm deals

I was riding along with my brother, Ryan Vaubel one Saturday morning to pick up some bucket calves and he was telling my husband and I about the last few loads of calves he sold.

He was selling them all over the state and to some interesting characters. I was sitting there thinking how in the world is he getting connected to all these people?

So, I asked, “how are these people finding you?”

Ryan replied, “Craigslist.”

Huh.

I’ve heard of people buying and selling all kinds of consumer goods on there, but until then did not realize the potential to market and sell agricultural items and livestock.

Ryan had a friend mention it to him and first posted some calves he had for sale a couple of years ago. Not only did he find buyers, but many of those contacts have become repeat customers. In addition to calves, he has also sold a snowmobile along with hay and straw on the site.

Ryan says the key is checking the site often. “I usually check it at least once a day. It’s first come, first served. You have to call people right away if there’s stuff you want to buy.”

He has sold items as far away as Kentucky and up into Michigan, but most of his buyers are from Northwest Ohio.

“I’ve sold to anyone from old retired guys to kids in high schools on there,” Ryan said. “I never would have imagined this many people in ag using the site. I’ve found alot of local people that I would have never met if it hadn’t been for Craigslist.”

If fact, one of those contacts lead to a contracting deal for calves. Ryan is finishing up the remodeling of a building that will house an automated calf feeder, similar to the one at Keller Farms. He is just weeks away from receiving his first group of calves.

I did a quick search on Craigslist under the farm + garden category to see just what all I could find  in my area. I found:

  • Lots of fair animals for sale
  • Cheap seed corn
  • Jersey bulls
  • Contracting for non-GMO soybeans
  • Someone from my own town looking for a barn to rent.

Have you bought or sold an ag related item on Craigslist?

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