Because of our experience in food processing (we have a Kansas food processing license and a certified organic processing certificate from OneCert in Lincoln, NE) our farm was awarded a SARE research grant (Sustainable Agricultural Research and Education) to help small farmers improve their share of the food dollar by processing and preserving their own fruit and vegetables. For example, we diced 310 pounds of butternut squash for the Gardner-Edgerton School District, blanched and froze green beans for the KC Foodhub’s CSA, froze local strawberries and frozen, diced butternut squash that was sold to the Merc in Lawreence and our customers at market, baked scones and sold fresh and frozen unbaked scones at market. We pickled okra, cucumbers, and cherry tomatoes, made jams from our blackberries and cherries, and dried herbs. We will publish detailed records of the food safety steps, the equipment used, and the amount of labor required for each processed item on this website as well as the SARE website below.
Follow this link to read a summary of our SARE research: SARE Grant 2018
Follow the link to view the full report of our SARE research grant: https://projects.sare.org/sare_project/fnc18-1133/
We are launching a CSA in 2019 where we will offer weekly deliveries (or pickups) of our Certified Organic produce. Last year we grew forty-five different fruits and vegetables. To sign up for our CSA follow this link: Pat & Rachel's Gardens CSA.
Farm to Cafeteria
Pat & Rachel’s Gardens’ organic processing facility was featured in several segments of this KCPT presentation about getting nutritious foods into our schools.
Value-Added Processing of Vegetables and Fruits
Pat & Rachels Gardens was awarded a research grant from SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education) in 2018 to investigate how small farmers could increase their share of the food dollar by making value-added product. This video was taken midway through our research.