Jump to content

COMPETITION! Most harebrained business idea?


DTEJD1997
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hey all:

 

I want to get a thread going on a slightly different tack....

 

I am going to start a competition between us for the most idiotic business idea!

 

In order to poast, you must have personally witnessed your submission or have had first hand knowledge of it.  I will get this thread started with the following:

 

I personally know somebody very well who is going to start selling bugs & worms as edible food.

 

This person has a TERRIBLE track record of businesses.  He has lost money in everything that he has done...going bankrupt a couple of times.  He has lost real estate, filed bankruptcy, etc.  He is a University of Michigan graduate....

 

He read on the interwebs that the world is running out of food and that bugs & worms are viable protein alternatives.  Namely meal worms, crickets, and perhaps earth worms.  So he has researched raising meal worms.  He is going to sports bars & strip clubs in the Metro Detroit area to sell them on this idea.  His line of reasoning is that people in sports bars & strip clubs are drinking alcohol and are willing to try new things...

 

Mind you, he has never done sales before.  He has a TERRIBLE, look, disposition and frequently gets into arguments/fights with people.  I am afraid that if he is not INCREDIBLY careful in doing this, he is going to receive a terrible beating.  Getting arrested might be another alternative.

 

Who is going to buy BBQ & Sirracha meal worms from some dude wandering in off the street?  Meal worms grown specifically in his garage?

 

He has already ordered supplies, growing tubs, etc.

 

In addition to this being a bad business decision....he also risks tremendous collateral fallout.  He has 10KG of BBQ meal worms coming to his house.  He, his wife, & kids are going to eat them.  He has formulated this idea completely by himself without any support/input from family.  He is also going to give them out as his samples when he goes the bars/clubs.

 

I only shudder to think how his wife is going to react to them having to eat KGS of BBQ meal worms....

 

He will farm them in his garage, which has a workshop space and plenty of room. 

 

What are his margins/yield?  He does not know, not even a guesstimate.  What will he sell them for?  He does not know.  Can you even produce food in your garage and then bring it around for human consumption in bars?  Aren't there laws about food production?  A:  I don't think there are any for worms/crickets/bugs.

 

Do you have sales brochures/website?  NO  Do you have a sales pitch?  NO

 

This goes on & on...but I predict that he will get ZERO in revenue, will have a disgruntled wife/children, wasted time & capital, might be arrested or beaten/robbed.

 

Can anybody top this example? 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey all:

 

I want to get a thread going on a slightly different tack....

 

I am going to start a competition between us for the most idiotic business idea!

 

In order to poast, you must have personally witnessed your submission or have had first hand knowledge of it.  I will get this thread started with the following:

 

I personally know somebody very well who is going to start selling bugs & worms as edible food.

 

This person has a TERRIBLE track record of businesses.  He has lost money in everything that he has done...going bankrupt a couple of times.  He has lost real estate, filed bankruptcy, etc.  He is a University of Michigan graduate....

 

He read on the interwebs that the world is running out of food and that bugs & worms are viable protein alternatives.  Namely meal worms, crickets, and perhaps earth worms.  So he has researched raising meal worms.  He is going to sports bars & strip clubs in the Metro Detroit area to sell them on this idea.  His line of reasoning is that people in sports bars & strip clubs are drinking alcohol and are willing to try new things...

 

Mind you, he has never done sales before.  He has a TERRIBLE, look, disposition and frequently gets into arguments/fights with people.  I am afraid that if he is not INCREDIBLY careful in doing this, he is going to receive a terrible beating.  Getting arrested might be another alternative.

 

Who is going to buy BBQ & Sirracha meal worms from some dude wandering in off the street?  Meal worms grown specifically in his garage?

 

He has already ordered supplies, growing tubs, etc.

 

In addition to this being a bad business decision....he also risks tremendous collateral fallout.  He has 10KG of BBQ meal worms coming to his house.  He, his wife, & kids are going to eat them.  He has formulated this idea completely by himself without any support/input from family.  He is also going to give them out as his samples when he goes the bars/clubs.

 

I only shudder to think how his wife is going to react to them having to eat KGS of BBQ meal worms....

 

He will farm them in his garage, which has a workshop space and plenty of room. 

 

What are his margins/yield?  He does not know, not even a guesstimate.  What will he sell them for?  He does not know.  Can you even produce food in your garage and then bring it around for human consumption in bars?  Aren't there laws about food production?  A:  I don't think there are any for worms/crickets/bugs.

 

Do you have sales brochures/website?  NO  Do you have a sales pitch?  NO

 

This goes on & on...but I predict that he will get ZERO in revenue, will have a disgruntled wife/children, wasted time & capital, might be arrested or beaten/robbed.

 

Can anybody top this?

 

I can't stop laughing from reading this.  My vote is that you won this contest already.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That's awesome.

 

As a dog owner I've become fascinated by the lengths pet owners will go to assure their pet is receiving high quality food. I wonder if your friend could pivot his business into a high end, no fillers, no preservatives, high protein dog food or food supplement for dogs. I'm sure there are pet owners who would buy it if you told them the worm based protein is hormone and antibiotic free.

 

Personally I prefer to eat worms after they've been transformed into lean muscle by chickens but there are a few diets based on eating lower on the food chain so who knows maybe he'll have some success  ::)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey all:

 

Thank you all for the positive response!  Especially the idea about a reality TV show...that actually might be a good idea!  Believe me, this guy is pretty far out there.  Much like a train wreck, I simply can't look away from this debacle.

 

I forgot to mention in the first posting that I know so much about this debacle because I was asked to invest in it.

 

I also have an update to report!

 

The aspiring worm rancher is going on a tour today of a "urban farm".  He insisted that I come along with him...but alas, I've got to do other things to attend to today.

 

I was interested in this "farm" tour though.  Do they raise worms/crickets?

 

A:  Well no, they are raising lettuce & herbs in a hydroponic set-up.

 

Q: OK, so how does this apply to your situation?

 

A:  Well, they are an urban farm, operating in Detroit.  I am next to Detroit.  They are a farm in a warehouse...I am going to farm in my garage/workshop.

 

They have been doing it for a while, so they can give me pointers.  They also might want to distribute my product to go along with theirs.  They are "all natural" producers and I am too!  I will not use any chemicals in the raising of my meal worms, nor will I raise genetically modified worms.

 

Q:  Oh ok, I see the logic now!  Good luck!  Let me know what happens next!

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I only shudder to think how his wife is going to react to them having to eat KGS of BBQ meal worms....

 

Laughed so hard at this  ;D

 

As a dog owner I've become fascinated by the lengths pet owners will go to assure their pet is receiving high quality food. I wonder if your friend could pivot his business into a high end, no fillers, no preservatives, high protein dog food or food supplement for dogs. I'm sure there are pet owners who would buy it if you told them the worm based protein is hormone and antibiotic free.

 

This actually doesn't seem such a bad idea to me, but there already must be something out there like this, no?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

He read on the interwebs that the world is running out of food and that bugs & worms are viable protein alternatives.  Namely meal worms, crickets, and perhaps earth worms.

 

There are people around the world who eat insects and this might not be such a bad idea. 

 

Good story though.  By the sound of it, the person you know isn't the right entrepreneur to tackle this or any other business endeavor.   

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Around 2010, I found a micro cap Chinese company selling wine made out of tree frogs. Not only that, they claimed it was very profitable.

 

It's not that harebrained. I know people who do the "medicinal" snake wine ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snake_wine ) and it is very profitable ... for them. TCM and other folk medicine crap is usually very profitable for sellers.  ::)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Around 2010, I found a micro cap Chinese company selling wine made out of tree frogs. Not only that, they claimed it was very profitable.

 

It's not that harebrained. I know people who do the "medicinal" snake wine ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Snake_wine ) and it is very profitable ... for them. TCM and other folk medicine crap is usually very profitable for sellers.  ::)

No kidding. Last time i was in Beijing I went to a Chinese medicine "pharmacy". The place was huge. 3 stories - lots of floor space. There were lots of weird things. However one thing stood out for being really expensive. It turns out it was elk penis. Apparently it's taken for virility. They sold it by the sliver because of the price. If you wanted to buy in bulk to save money they were also selling the whole thing. It went for $250,000 apiece.  Talk about profitability!

 

With all the elk we have in Canada we'd all be rich if we can sell their junk for 250 grand in volume.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Anyone else watch Shark Tank? One of the pitches was a chip made with crickets. Basically a corn tortilla chip enhanced with "cricket flour" most of the Sharks said it tasted good. Your friend better step up his offerings lest they corner the insect edibles market first  ;D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Anyone else watch Shark Tank? One of the pitches was a chip made with crickets. Basically a corn tortilla chip enhanced with "cricket flour" most of the Sharks said it tasted good. Your friend better step up his offerings lest they corner the insect edibles market first  ;D

 

Here's a shot of a nice buffet at the weekend market in Bangkok (the grasshoppers were pretty tasty...)

P5132575.thumb.JPG.eda0586bf5a45fdbb0b46ea322600c92.JPG

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

Hey all:

 

I've got an unfortunate update on the bug & worm selling scheme...

 

I bumped into the guy's wife the other day and she updated me as to what is going on.

 

A). Most of the BBQ & Siracha meal worms remain uneaten.  The children refused to touch them and almost panicked when they were being cooked.  They barely ate for days as they were worried that the worms would be "worked into" other foods to be gotten rid of.  I.E. grind up the meal worms and put them in spaghetti sauce.  So big problem there....

 

B). The dude actually ate a bunch of the stuff and could barely choke it down.  The chocolate dipped scorpions remain untouched.  None of the stuff is "tasty", it is just a question of how much of it can be eaten.

 

C). He ordered about 1/2 of the supplies to get growing meal worms.  So now there is a bunch of plastic tubs & stands & lights.

 

I then asked the guy behind the scheme how everything was going a few days later in person.  He got rather defensive and said he is going "my own speed".  So he wasted a bunch of time & $.  He pissed off his wife and got his children all worked up.

 

WHO WOULD HAVE EVER THOUGHT THERE WOULD BE PROBLEMS?

 

Oh well, onto the next idea...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey all:

 

I've got an unfortunate update on the bug & worm selling scheme...

 

I bumped into the guy's wife the other day and she updated me as to what is going on.

 

A). Most of the BBQ & Siracha meal worms remain uneaten.  The children refused to touch them and almost panicked when they were being cooked.  They barely ate for days as they were worried that the worms would be "worked into" other foods to be gotten rid of.  I.E. grind up the meal worms and put them in spaghetti sauce.  So big problem there....

 

B). The dude actually ate a bunch of the stuff and could barely choke it down.  The chocolate dipped scorpions remain untouched.  None of the stuff is "tasty", it is just a question of how much of it can be eaten.

 

C). He ordered about 1/2 of the supplies to get growing meal worms.  So now there is a bunch of plastic tubs & stands & lights.

 

I then asked the guy behind the scheme how everything was going a few days later in person.  He got rather defensive and said he is going "my own speed".  So he wasted a bunch of time & $.  He pissed off his wife and got his children all worked up.

 

WHO WOULD HAVE EVER THOUGHT THERE WOULD BE PROBLEMS?

 

Oh well, onto the next idea...

 

You should show this to your friend. The initial argument that cows/pigs/sheep and maybe chickens take a lot of feed input relative to what we get back in usable food is fundamentally sound. Whether we're limited by feed inputs or not is a separate question, but there's probably some benefit in raising food sources that are efficient in their conversion of feed to food on our tables.

 

Now to crickets and other insects - they have a feed conversion ratio of around 1.7:1 meaning you need about 1.7kgs of feed for 1kg of insect. By comparison chickens are 1.9:1.

 

The real surprise when I was looking into this though comes in aquaculture. Farm raised salmon can be as low as 1.2:1 and shrimp in the range of 1.6:1

 

While we can discuss the taste quality of farm raised salmon and shrimp, as protein sources they're quite fine and probably quite a bit more palatable to the average consumer than insects.

 

http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/aquaculture/faqs/faq_aq_101.html

http://www.aqua-techna.com/en/productivity/experts/feed-conversion-ratio-farmed-fish

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...