quick help

skatcon(z3 MN)April 25, 2010

I am in northern MN and actually have some produce to sell now. But I don't know how to handle it. It is spinach and looseleaf lettuce. Do I wash? Dry? How? any hints or suggestions would be most welcome. I am so excited, it is my first CSA delivery and I want to do it right. Thanks for help.

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I always give my greens a quick rinse and shake dry. I harvest in a mesh bag, then dip the bag into a barrel of water, then spin it around in the air. Then let it drip til dry enough.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2010 at 7:43AM
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Wash them ASAP after harvest in cold water with salt and vinegar (I do around 1/4 cup salt and 1 cup vinegar for 30 gallons). Trim off any bad leaves and plunge into water. the best way to dry is a salad spinner but if you have good rotator cuffs than get a mesh laundry bag and put the washed greens in that and twirl around your head for a couple of minutes. repeat until all the greens are dried. A commercial salad spinner which costs around $175, takes about 1/5th the time and gets the greens a lot drier and less damaged. I feel it is well worth the cost.

I pack the washed and dried greens into plastic harvest crates lined with clean and dry towels and than put them into the fridge. Keeping greens between 32 and 42 degrees is really important to keep quality up.

For my CSA I bag all the greens as they don't wilt while waiting to be picked up that way. I also keep the shares in a fridge until they are picked up but I have on farm pick up. if delivering you will need enough cooler with ice packs for all the shares to be stored in until pick up.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2010 at 12:25PM
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skatcon(z3 MN)

Thank you for the quick response. After spending three hours yesterday hand spinning spinach, I am considering a salad spinner. However the only one I could find was at Johnnie's and was 238 dollars. Do you know of an alternative source that is less expensive? And where do folks get their plastic bags? There must be a site somewhere that caters to market gardeners, but I have not been able to find it.
Thank you again for taking the time from your busy schedule to respond.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2010 at 12:08PM
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Try this. I see they have gone up in price since I bought one 10 years ago but still a lot cheaper than Johnnys by $50

Here is a link that might be useful: Dynamic salad spinners

    Bookmark   April 28, 2010 at 9:23AM
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I ran across the following Harvest Manual at Roxburyfarm

Here is a link that might be useful: Harvest Manual

    Bookmark   April 29, 2010 at 10:53AM
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