Lori and Michael Osada, MiLo Acres
Grant Award: $3,000—Walk-in Cooler
The Osadas are adding an on-site walk-in cooler to store their naturally certified produce, fruit and eggs and extend shelf life. They are able to harvest and store more product than they ever have before.
In 2012, the Osadas doubled their production, making it difficult for them to keep their produce fresh and crisp. Lori said they were horrified that their watermelons, which need to be cooled down and kept cool right after harvest, exploded on one of their customers. “Upon cutting open one of our watermelons, a CSA customer stated, ‘It cracked loudly and exploded all over the place,’ including his face,” Lori said.
The cooler also increases farm income as it enables the Osadas to get more product to market. They sell to Black Mountain Natural Foods, Black Mountain Tailgate Market, French Broad Tailgate Market, local restaurants and to Community Supported Agriculture members. They also donate more than 500 pounds of produce per year to those in need.