Update, microcredit, etc.

Joe Shaw jshaw@opuntiads.com
Sat, 16 Dec 2006 07:33:15 PST
Hi Gang,

It seems that my buddy and his connections in India have confirmed almost 
all the ideas presented in this forum (pro and con) about bulb crops for a 
microcredit-type business.   The main result is that the cons outweigh the 
pros.  Interestingly, Web ordering is not a major problem as text messages 
can instantaneously reach remote areas on that wonder-of-wonders invention, 
the cell phone.

As was predicted, marketing-related problems are the fly in the ointment. 
It is quite true that domestic markets may exist in India, but they are not 
developed or targetable by means that anyone can think of (at least not 
reliably so).  So, backyard bulbs would have to be shipped out of the 
country and even if shipping costs were not prohibitive there is the problem 
of extra costs from phytosanitary certificates.  Taken together, all the 
factors do not suggest putting 2-4 years into bulb growing without a well 
defined market.

Thanks to all of you who wrote to me privately and discussed the pros and 



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