Easton, MD – Responding to requests from regional growers, Chesapeake Harvest is hosting a free, wholesale readiness workshop on Tuesday, March 20, 2018. Beginning at 3:00 PM, farmers in all phases of business development are invited to start the experience with a one-hour tour of the facilities at Other Side Produce located at 9654 Brickyard Drive, Seaford, Delaware, 19973.

Other Side manager, Dallas Lister elaborates, “The mission of Other Side Produce is to bring the highest quality produce to market for restaurants, schools, and other institutional entities. In order to improve purchases from the local market, we feel it is beneficial to helps local farmers understand how our customers expect to receive their product. We welcome the opportunity to work with local growers on how packaging, storage, and transportation of produce translates to the end user.”
Following the Other Side tour, workshop attendees will travel (transportation not provided) to Parkside High School in Salisbury, MD where, beginning at 4:30 PM, they will further explore the unique standards for produce harvesting and post-harvest handling when selling into wholesale markets.

Ashley and Johnny Harrison, owners of Terrapin Farms, a hydroponic operation in Berlin, MD, will provide a look at their journey from 2015 startup to thriving 2018 farm operation, including the challenges of keeping products in top condition until they reach the end user. Ashley remarks, “We are looking forward to sharing some of what we’ve learned over the past few years and hope our knowledge can help guide other small farms that seek to sell wholesale locally.”

Following the Harrison’s presentation, Chesapeake Harvest consultant, Lindsay Gilmour, will offer a detailed discussion of wholesale, post-harvest handling requirements, particularly as relate to food safety regulations.

Included with this information-packed evening will be a bagged supper, prepared by members of the Parkside High School culinary program, and a student-led tour of A+ Garden Centre, an award-winning, community-supported and student-operated Career Technology Program (CTE), under the direction of Mr. Jerry Kelly. Kelly notes, “”We appreciate the work of Chesapeake Harvest and our region’s farmers in providing students with opportunities for both analysis and hands on experience in the local food movement.” Students will be on hand to discuss their farm research and greenhouse growing program at the March 20th event.

Elizabeth Beggins, production manager with Chesapeake Harvest, notes, “The end goal with this free workshop is to support regional growers in their efforts to showcase the products they work so hard to produce. Whether by walking them through the food safety certification process, connecting them with buyers, or – as with this workshop – offering wholesale readiness training, we are helping regional farmers expand their local food markets. We care about increased access to Delmarva-grown produce in the Chesapeake Bay foodshed, and we are here to help make that possible.”

In addition to wholesale readiness workshops and wholesale buying opportunities, Chesapeake Harvest offers individualized food safety consultations for farmers seeking Harmonized Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) certification.

For all training opportunities, registration is required. Call 410.690.7348, email info@chesapeakeharvest.com or visit www.ChesapeakeHarvest.com. To register online for the free classes, participants can also use the Events tab on the Chesapeake Harvest Facebook page, or by going directly to the Eventbrite registration page.

About Chesapeake Harvest:
Chesapeake Harvest, a project of the Easton Economic Development Corporation, is working to build a vibrant local food economy on the Eastern Shore producing healthy food bursting with flavor. Chesapeake Harvest is committed to sourcing local, clean, and diverse ingredients that fuel the growth of a regional Chesapeake Cuisine. Chesapeake Harvest seeks out farmers who show their commitment to regenerative agricultural practices that protect the future of the Chesapeake Bay. Chesapeake Harvest gives preference to those who share our belief that sustainability is not a fixed point but a pathway of continuous improvement.

About the EEDC:
Easton Economic Development Corporation was launched in 2013 to drive economic vitality, smart redevelopment, and business creation in the historic Town of Easton, Maryland to foster a healthy quality of life for all generations. The EEDC works toward managing Easton’s continued growth as a diverse and healthy “smart town,” leading innovation where the land and water meet.
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Caption 1: Chesapeake Harvest workshop, with Other Side Produce, Terrapin Farms, and Parkside High School CTE students, will offer insights in post-harvest handling and wholesale packing.
Caption 2: Terrapin Farms owners Ashley and Johnny Harrison will present at the March 20 workshop.