Monday, August 11, 2008

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions!

Just about everyone in the fundraising industry says the same thing. Most organizations are slow in making decisions about fundraising projects this year. Some organizations are finding it difficult to find volunteers to staff their projects, while others are taking a "wait and see" stance toward the economy. It is likely that gas prices and rising food prices will have an impact on people's attitudes about spending, but we have not seen any real impact on fundraising sales yet. We do see a trend toward frozen foods and $1 chocolate bars. Adding World's Finest Chocolate to our local mix of products has been a very good thing. Most people will have a dollar to spend and will enjoy the quality and taste of the chocolate, especially as it is a larger bar for the money than most retail brands. Our frozen food sales have been increasing also. Our brochure prices were locked in back in November of 2007, and our costs from suppliers were based on futures prices at that time, so now as grocery store prices rise, our frozen food prices are becoming ever more attractive to consumers, and our fundraising client groups are reaping the benefits.

If your organization is thinking about a giftwrap catalog, jewelry, flower bulbs, or any other nonfood take-order program, the time to act is now, as brochures will soon be sold out. Many of the gift and wrap items are imported from the orient and there is a finite supply in warehouses in this country and not enough lead time to bring in more. If you wait past September first, you should probably opt for our frozen food program, domestically produced cheese/sausage/chocolate, or chocolate bars. That way you will be assured of receiving your product in a timely fashion. There were many horror stories in the fall of 2007 about other companies not delivering on time. Fortunately we did not have that problem because we stopped accepting reservations when we saw that available inventories were close to committed.

Decisions, decisions, decisions. The time to decide is right now.