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Our group of six students from Saudi Arabia is formed in order to sell date fruits at the university. We are going to sell only high quality dates. It is well-known, that dates are grown in the Arabian Peninsula, where farmers have relied on growing exotic fruits. Saudi Arabia has best types of dates in the world. This type we are going to sell. It is remarkable, that the quality of dates in the British markets is poor and the prices are very expensive. So, our aim is to introduce really good product to a customer.
In Saudi Arabia 173 million hectares are occupied for pasture. There are fruits and vegetables grown. Also they bred animals there. Conditions of rangeland are not so good. Production potential is very low in some places. Almost 86% of the total accessible water in the region is allocated for agriculture. So, the 22% of the total land area is cultivable.
Palm tree is remarkable for its salt-tolerance and heat endurance. The shallow groundwater is extremely important for its successful growth. Age of the date palm can reach a hundred years. Life of the people inhabiting Arabian Peninsula is associated with this palm tree. People demand dates become more and more in the United Kingdom. It seems that if everyone knew about the usefulness of dates, they would have been even more reclaiming.
Date palm is a typical plant of dry subtropics that gives an edible tasty fruit. One date palm makes over 100 kilograms of nutritious dates a year. Naturally, that for thousands of years emerged around 5000 varieties divided into three main groups – “dry”, “semi”, and “soft”. The “soft” are consumed on the spot with fresh, in a mature state; the fruits of these varieties contain very little sugar. “Dry” dates, dried in the sun, contain much more sugar and can be stored for very long, it can be said for years. As for the “semi” – those intended for export, they are also dried in the sun. Processed dates are generally more popular than natural dates. There are many types of packaging: bags, tubes, ravier, boxes. The ravier has the leadership. It is well known, that semi dates are the tastiest. Moreover, it is considered, that semi dates favorably affect the brain, increasing its productivity. But our strategy will allow buyers tasting all sorts of dates chose the best one for everyone as well.
Dates contain almost all vitamins. It should be noted the high concentration of pantothenic acid. This substance stimulates the production of energy, makes you confident, energetic and able to quickly focus on. Dates have also another, less well-known property: these fruits have mild sedative and hypnotic effects.
Dates can also be encouraged to overcome the weakening of the body after a serious illness, overwork, stress. No fruit can be compared with dates, if you want to satisfy your hunger. Dates increase efficiency of the brain and nerve cells. From ancient times, dates were used not only as food but also as a medicine.
They contain copper, iron, magnesium, zinc, potassium, phosphorus, sodium, aluminum, cadmium, cobalt, sulfur, boron. Dates can help with anemia. It has a beneficial effect in fatigue and physical fatigue. It helps with colds as well. Ten dates are able to satisfy our daily needs in copper, magnesium and sulfur, and they contain half of the required iron and fourth of the calcium. Dates are a tasty and natural dessert that has a nice flavor. These fruits are absolutely harmless, as well as low-calorie fruits and therefore suitable for people watching their weight.
Mission Statement and Objectives
Our group members want to run this small business for getting some experience about small business. It will be really good experience for us to make the business plan and to see how it works in real. We realize that it is not so easy for students who only make their first steps in business but we are ready to try. He is lifeless who is faultless. We are sure, that this experience will be our first attempt to arrange small business and to see how much effort it will require. We are not afraid of mistakes.
Our mission is to provide high quality date fruits for consumption. The idea behind the business is to sell healthy and valuable fruits to the public for everyone to pay attention on usefulness of dates. A variety of classes provides the possibility to chose. All sorts of date fruits are healthy and become popular in many countries not by chance.
In his research about the marketing potential of date palm fruits, Pascal Liu says, that Europe is a key market for date exporters. Over half a million tones of dates imported every year in the world. The European Union accounts for 10% of the total with some 50 000 tones. Imports of dates into Europe were comparatively stable from 1990 to 1997: nearly 43 000 tones were imported. In 1998-2000 the rise in imported quantities did not translate into a higher value of imports because of the fall in import prices in 1999-2000. Imports of date fruits into European countries are seasonal. Often they take place at the end of the year (Liu). In Muslim countries traditionally dates are consumed during Ramadan. Most European countries do not produce dates. The exception is Spain with a little quantity. France often re-exports date fruits. Most of the re-export trade takes place between European member countries (Liu). People demand dates become more and more in UK. France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and Spain account for 85% of total imports of dates in volumes. Ireland’s imports are also growing. Backwards, Portugal, Netherlands, Finland, Austria show no clear trend. There are also some more date varieties:
Deglet nour date variety is the most popular in Europe. Imports of this type of date are nearly 30 000 tones a year. This type is exported from Tunisia and Algeria. Also deglet nour is produced in Israel. The United States is also a producer of this type of dates. Germany and Britain import not big quantities. Southern European countries mainly consume deglet nour dates.
Not deglet nour called common dates by European traders. Germany and the United Kingdom together import over 10 000 tones of common dates annually. German traders need the low price for this type of dates. Common dates also used for food in Great Britain.
European people know mejool since 1990s. However, it is only last three years that they have really taken off. Nowadays the United States share the European market of dates with Israel. As more and more consumers turn to organic foods, retailers will look for a complete range of organic products, including dates.
France is the leading market for dates in the European Union. Its main suppliers are Algeria and Tunisia. The United Kingdom is the second largest European market for date fruits. Then Italy and Germany follow. Imports of dates increased last years. Germany primarily imports common dates. Consumption of higher quality dates tends to increase. Spain is the fifth largest date market in Europe. But it is remarkable, that it is a country where imports are growing.
Tunisia is a leader in producing of deglet nour. The official production figure in 2001 was 107 000 tones for all varieties.
Algeria is the second largest producer of dates in the world (deglet nour). In 2000 365 000 tones of all varieties of dates were produced.
Iran is the second largest date producer in the world with over 900 000 tones. It is the leading date supplier in the United Kingdom. Its other two largest clients are Germany and Denmark(Liu).
These countries export common dates.
Israel produces little quantities of date fruits (9 5000 tones in 2001). But its exports to European countries have increased over the past years and now it have reached 4 300 tones.
The United States exports deglet nour and mejool dates to European countries. It produces dates in California.
Pakistan is the fourth largest date producer in the world with over half a million tones in 2000. Common dates are exported to Europe from Pakistan.
There are significant trade flows between the countries of the European Union. Some countries re-export dates. They are estimated at over 20 000 tones a year. The main markets of France are Germany, Belgium, Netherlands and the United Kingdom (Liu). The other European countries re-export much smaller quantities. Sine 1992 the United Kingdom exports less than 500 tones to such countries as Ireland, Denmark and Germany.
Germany has become the European Union’s second largest date exporter (700-900 tones a year). Germany exports dates to such countries as Austria and Denmark.
The Netherlands re-exports between 500 and 700 tones annually.
Our selling group will initially market its product to target clients. To achieve this goal:
We will create bright booklets, brochures which describe the benefit of dates, its useful properties. These booklets will be given for free on the streets close to our university. There will be invitations at the exhibition of the dates also.
We will post an advertisement about the forthcoming exhibition at the Internet, on popular social networks.
We will organize an exhibition of the dates where fruits will be sold at low price. This is necessary for everyone to have a possibility to taste dates. There also books and magazines about date fruits will be sold.
We will organize some lectures to tell more about the dates and even to explain how to grow date palm at home.
For sale we need nearly 50 kilograms of date fruits and we will order it at the market. Also we will order some interesting books about dates. We plan to hold an exhibition for 6 days. During this time we want to show that if to provide an effective advertisement people will gladly buy healthy and tasty dates. With a help of interesting and cognitive booklets a lot of customers will get to know more about these fruits and re-discover it for them. At the exhibition everyone will get an opportunity to taste dates for free and then to decide if to buy it or not. All three kinds of dates will be featured at the exhibition. To every kind there will be a special description with its characteristics. Dates will be located in nice decorated pot. Two students will sale date fruits; one will sale books and two will give booklets to customers. One student will be outside near the university giving booklets to students. But before the exhibition we will provide some lectures about dates which will include history knowledge about these fruits. Lectures will be not boring, because we will prepare presentation and some additional materials about date palms and dates. We also will find some recipes of dishes with dates. Two students will lecture; three will give booklets on the streets and one will post an advertisement about an exhibition on the Internet sites, such as facebook and myspace. These advertisements should pay students’ attention on the forthcoming exhibition. It is obligatory to create nice and memorable advertisements and brochures. The next day an exhibition will open, where everyone will get an opportunity to taste dates and to buy interesting materials about these fruits.
We choose Grove House for our group. Grove house is a charity for the cancerous persons. We choose this charity and want to help the patient to improve their life. Another reason is Grove House is near the law school, not too far away from De Havilland Campus. There are six members in our group. We divide our work and have group meeting in every lecture. We have a finical plan about our cash flow. In our plan, we will earn 25 pounds and all of the money will be given to Glove House to improve the patients’ life.
Our team of students who will sell date fruits are responsible and executive. Before the engaging in selling we examined the literature on the topic, made a plan of action and calculated the necessary amount of materials. Our team was divided into three groups and every one of us got his personal duties. Two students will create interesting brochures and booklets about date palms and date fruits. One student will order dates (50-60 kg). Two students will buy all necessary equipment, such as pots for date fruits, tablecloth, and tray. One student will make a presentation for the lection. One student will write a lection about dates using interesting historical facts and other information about date palms. This student also will find some recipes of dishes with dates. So, the process will begin when everything will be ready. All the six days of selling are also planned:
First day: Three students will lecture. Three students will hand out booklets and brochures. And one student will post advertisements on the Internet.
Second day: Three students will sell dates. One student will sell books. Two students will hand out brochures.
Forth and fifth days will be the same as second. We assign responsibilities in order to save time and resources. So, all the work will be done effectively.
We will ask friends and relatives to borrow some money; also will take not huge loan at the bank. It will be enough to buy all necessary things. It is estimated that this job will begin to make a profit after two days of operations. We do not expect to have huge cash problems during the selling. If there will be some, we will sell dates later. We also can organize more exhibitions in future when there will be possibilities for this.
If this selling will give a good profit, obviously, we will arrange it again very soon. And we will need only to buy date fruits, some books and perhaps some materials for brochures and booklets. As about utensils so we already have all the necessary. During these days we will earn money for charity.
The risk of this selling related to the point, that perhaps not all goods will be soled. Not all the booklets and brochures will be given. So, we may get a little profit or do not get any profit at all. Our costs can exceed the purchase. Another point is related with risk of lack attention of students to this arrangement. We are going to sell dates at the university, so our main clients are students. Surely, if we will provide good advertising, this arrangement will be undoubtedly successful. If we will pay not so much attention to advertising, so our selling will be not so impressive. So, good advertising is the most important thing for our arrangement.
This plan is a guide for our action, the product and service part show what we will sale and what we will service to the customers.
We want to believe that our first steps in the small business will be done successfully. We realize that it is impossible without mistakes but with its help we will get to know what to do in future. We believe also that our first business plan will help us to see by our eyes what the small business is and what this job demands from us. But it is not all that we are expecting to receive. We want people to know more about date fruits and to discover dates for everyone from new sides. We suppose it will be quite helpful. Everyone will get an opportunity not only to buy tasty dates but also to broad his outlook. We believe we will achieve our aims.
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