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Selling Leaves

January 24th, 2006 at 02:59 pm

Previous Total: $52.41

Current Total: $52.41

Inventory: none

While this post isn't really directly related to the challenge, I thought is was a great example of the way you can take something and turn it into a nice business by thinking a bit outside the box.

I was watching TV last night and they has a special on a town in the Japanese countryside where most of the residents are elderly - over 65 years old. The town was dying as all the younger people moved to the cities to find jobs and there was no income coming in for most of the residents. It was going to be another town that simply died until one of the residents came up with an idea. The idea? Selling leaves.

You read that correctly. The town sells leaves - as those things that hang on trees. One of the residents figured out that high end restaurants in Japan use a variety of different seasonal leaves to display with the food to make it more attractive. The towns people (many in their 80s) walk out the door and pick the leaves off the trees to sell. So how much can the earn doing this? The average monthly salary is $2,000 while in peak season in the late fall and before New Year they can ear as much as $20,000 a month.

This isn't one or two families, but the entire town. The entire business brings in over $10 million a year. It's a brilliant idea. The cost of the product is $0 - it has always been right there under their noses. It just needs to be packaged and sent.

Now if I can just come up with something as brilliant for this challenge...

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