This past Monday I had an opportunity to drive out to the Lancaster with some of our farmers to check out another organic cooperative that is out there. This cooperative is called Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative, and it is HUGE!
Before we went to the warehouse we stopped at one of the cooperatives farms, who is owned by someone that Aaron has spoken to before. We were shown around the fields and green houses (I couldn't understand what they were saying because they were speaking German) and some of the crops that are grown on this farm include cucumber and carrots.
The next stop was the LFFC Warehouse in Leola. When we arrived we were greeted by the, I think, Manager Casey. He then showed us around the different coolers and packing areas. This warehouse is definitely bigger than our own, but it would have to be to have enough space to store the produce for almost 6,000 CSA shares a week. Yep, that's right. 6,000! We only pack around 600 a week, and there is only three of us! At LFFC there are nine people in a packing line and they have a roller table, which gives them a slight advantage. And I didn't see it personally, but Casey told us that the packers can pack a box in 6 seconds! That's really fast considering their shares are bigger than ours and it takes us at least thirty seconds. But I guess when you have 6,000 shares you learn to hurry!
Aside from the really long drive I had a good time and it was nice to see the other side of thee state again. I learned a lot and hopefully I can implement those learnings here at CRO (like pack a box in 3 seconds) :) Probably not but I can sure try!
And since today is Thursday I was at one of the farms. Well this time two. I started at Toby's helping his daughter pick shell peas (which are for their own use, not for CRO) and then we went up to James' farm. Whatever was originally planned didn't happen because of the rain so we weeded the small blueberry patch and planted some cauliflower and broccoli. Then afterwards I helped them shuck peas. Hopefully next week will be more productive. Keep an eye for my post to see if it is!