MilkRun Gives Farmers Direct Sales
MilkRun, a Portland, Oregon, company founded by farmer and entrepreneur Julia Niiro, is supporting local farmers on small farms by enabling them to sell produce safely and directly to consumers. The online platform allows farmers to set their own prices, eliminating wholesalers, shippers and truckers. After consumers place orders, farmers deliver the produce to an aggregation hub where MilkRun boxes and ships it.
Niiro explains that while wholesale orders from restaurants have decreased dramatically due to COVID-19, direct purchasing from consumers is offsetting the losses. By re-scaling, creating new safety practices and adapting to direct consumer demand, farmers are able to turn a profit during the pandemic. According to the American Farm Bureau Federation, farmers receive roughly 8 percent of the purchase price from grocery stores, while MilkRun estimates a return of up to 70 percent of the purchase price through its platform.