On June 15, a professional cook had a conversation with her neighbor, an amateur gardener with no business experience who grew tomatoes for home use and to give to relatives. During the conversation, the cook mentioned that she might be interested in “branching out into making salsa” and that, if she did branch out, she would need to buy large quantities of tomatoes. Although the gardener had never sold tomatoes before, he told the cook that, if she wanted to buy tomatoes for salsa, he would be willing to sell her all the tomatoes he grew in his half-acre home garden that summer for $25 per bushel.
Later on June 15, shortly after this conversation, the cook said to the gardener, “I’m very interested in the possibility of buying tomatoes from you.” She then handed a document to the gardener and asked him to sign it. The document stated, “I offer to sell to [the cook] all the tomatoes I grow in my home garden this summer for $25 per bushel. I will hold this offer open for 14 days.”
The gardener signed the document and handed it back to the cook.
On June 19, the proprietor of a farmers’ market offered to buy all the tomatoes that the gardener grew in his home garden that summer for $35 per bushel. The gardener, happy about the chance to make more money, agreed, and the parties entered into a contract for the gardener to sell his tomatoes to the proprietor.
On June 24, the cook, who had not communicated with the gardener since the June 15 conversation, called the gardener. As soon as the cook identified herself, the gardener said, “I hope you are not calling to say that you want my tomatoes. I can’t sell them to you because I have sold them to someone else.” The cook replied, “You can’t do that. I called to accept your offer to sell me all your tomatoes for $25 per bushel. You promised to hold that offer open for 14 days. I accept your offer!”
- Is the gardener bound to sell the cook all the tomatoes he grows that summer for $25 per bushel? Explain.
Is the gardener bound to sell the cook all the tomatoes he grows that summer for $25 per bushel? Explain.