Can Food Appearance Affect Farmer’s Profitability?

Tanja Folnovic

Agronomy Expert

Food is our basic need. Running around to make it through the day, we have to eat, hence the purchase of food in a local grocery store is on our daily activity list. When walking through the store, we can see an abundance of delicious and fresh fruit and vegetables. But, have you ever wondered where all this food comes from and do all apples and carrots look the same as the ones in the store? 

Well, the truth is a little different. Not all apples are perfectly red and the same size, just like not all carrots are completely orange, long and straight. Every single fruit and vegetable is different in color, shape, and size. Not only do they differ in varieties, but also every variety has an individual with its own characteristics. That’s where their beauty comes from.



Why Some Fruits Never Come to the Store?

In farm markets, there are some standards that determine which fruit can come to the store. These are commercial standards such as certain color, shape, size, the presence of pest damages and physical deformations, texture, and flavor.

The first classification of fruits is in the field. Having in mind that only attractive fruits will bring him the desired income, a farmer selects more from less attractive fruits during or immediately after the harvest. Although this process can be made manually, modern technology allows faster and more precise fruit classification. Regarding the required commercial standards, fruit is classified into few quality grades.


The second classification happens before the fruit comes into the food system. The strict requirements of a certain grocery store usually discard a vast majority of fruit ready for consumption. As a result, a farmer can suffer from unexpected low income and, more importantly, he is left with a bunch of fruit in stock that needs to be sold as soon as possible. As a final result, the fruit becomes waste, instead of someone’s treat. 


A Sustainable Solution Against Fruit Waste

Every day, thousands of tons of food is wasted, including fruit and vegetables. Although waste is generated during the entire process of crop production and storage, a high amount of waste is also generated during the process of fruit preparation for the market.

In order to help farmers save their product, reduce fruit waste as well as manage sustainable farming, customers can give less money for less attractive but high-quality fruits. Moreover, they can also be a ‘’farmer for one day’’ and pick up fruit by themselves and in the meantime, enjoy the fresh air and nature.

In the end, there are always available solutions for those who want to be involved in environmental protection and solving the food waste problem.   



Image sources: LED Fresh Light || Olimpias S.A. || Vanco