I was having a discussion with someone the other day, whose argument was faulty. He stated that he could see no reason why a manufacturer should refuse to sell to the consumer. As a person who runs a wholesale company, as well as having my own retail business I totally understand why this happens. A manufacturer produces product in bulk, and sells it to a few wholesalers. These wholesalers then distribute the product in smaller lots to several retailers. The retailer sells smaller amounts of the product to numerous consumers. Using this method of sales, a company that manufactures something no else does, can set his price as high as he wants. But in most industries there are numerous manufactures making the same product. The wholesalers and retailers have to compete with one another, so usually their margins are quite low. But, a retailer who has a captive market can make his price as high as he wants. My friend stated he should just be able to go straight to the manufacturer. I tried to use the example of grocery shopping. When you go to the supermarket you buy, for example, 20 different products, in one place. But, if you bought them individually from the manufacturer you would have to make 20 stops, assuming that the manufacturer was actually in the same area in which you live. Which, more often than not is not the case. And, there is no guarantee that the product would be cheaper if you bought direct. His response was to tell me that the products he sells are cheaper than other retailers – herein lies the fault as he was now comparing himself as a retailer! I prefer to do one stop shopping, and so buy all my fresh produce at one store. For my chrain (horseradish condiment) I purchased everything I needed from one retailer. This makes the chrain cost effective. Had I been forced to buy each ingredient from the manufacturer directly, I would have had to find someone who makes vinegar (thankfully in our area), grows beetroot and horseradish (not farmed where we live) and drive around like crazy.
This has been made with horseradish which is seasonal, in time for Passover.
- 250mls white wine vinegar
- 250mls water
- 1 beetroot, cut in half and thinly sliced
- 100g finely grated fresh horseradish (peeled)
- Place the vinegar, water and beetroot into a small sauce pan
- Bring to the boil
- Add the horseradish
- Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes
- Remove from the heat and set aside to cool
- Place into a sterilized glass bottle
- Refrigerate and use as needed
Click on the links for conversions and notes.
What I blogged:
- two years ago – Friday’s Food Quiz
- three years ago – Cold Cucumber and Avocado Soup
- four years ago – Anise Hyssop