Over the past couple of weeks, gleaning coordinator Dylan Frazier has been busy building our new root washer! It was purchased as a kit from Grindstone Farm in New York, and after a few trips to the hardware store to get some remaining parts and a mounting system, it is now near completion and just about ready to be tested out. This new piece of equipment will allow us to wash root vegetables (potatoes, carrots, turnips, etc.) efficiently and effectively, which will be important as we strengthen our partnership with our distribution partners, The Greater Boston Food Bank and Food For Free. We can't wait to start using it this fall!
Last year, we gleaned and donated over 50,000 pounds of root vegetables (1033 bushels!) and we had to borrow Waltham Fields Community Farm’s wash station to rinse off the dirt off of the ones that we had time to wash. This worked well but it was always tricky to schedule washing times amidst the farms’ busy schedule. Now, we will be able to wash roots as they come in, which will greatly increase the desirability of this type of produce with our recipient agencies.