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Adds Value to Small Grains Production

World’s First Solar-Powered Flour Mill 
Adds Value to Small Grains Production

Learn more about solar solutions to help green and sustain processing needs

Join the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA), on Tuesday, October 23rd at Frankferd Farms in Butler County for an informative farm tour as part of PASA’s 2012 Farm-Based Education schedule.

Energy usage is an important factor in sustainability, and as the demand for alternative solutions increases, PASA is pleased to showcase this energy efficient model. Frankferd Farms is a family-owned organic farm in western Pennsylvania and they recently became home to the world’s first solar-powered flour mill. Join us to learn how this innovation is adding value to their small grains operation.

Our day will begin on the farm, exploring this grains business from field to market. Participants will hear from the solar installer, see the solar arrays and learn how they add value to the business. Discussions will also focus on grain planting and harvest considerations, establishing a product niche and choosing the right marketing channels for a grain operation.

You will get the details of how this 10 kilowatt system of solar panels powers the farm, the flour mill and the family home, and a 16 kilowatt array powers the food warehouse.

Owners Betty and T. Lyle Ferderber purchased Frankferd Farms from his parents in 1980 and began grinding flour in a small grist mill. In 1985 they expanded their business model by starting a natural foods distribution company specializing in organic, local, bulk and specialty foods. Starting from humble roots of turning their living room into a store with an inventory of noodles, peanut butter and flours from the farm, today, Frankferd Farms Foods works with dozens of food stores, co-ops, bakeries and restaurants, and offers 4,000 products to 2,500 customers in seven states. The farm and mill are organically certified by the Organic Crop Improvement Association (OCIA) and the distribution business is organically certified by Pennsylvania Certified Organic (PCO). We will finish the day touring the Frankferd Farms Foods warehouse to learn more details.

T. Lyle Ferderber received PASA’s Sustainable Agriculture Business Award on behalf of Frankferd Farms Foods at the 2012 Farming For The Future conference.

REGISTRATION -- PASA strives to ensure all those interested in becoming a member of the organization or attend an event can do so at a reasonable rate. For the first time, PASA is offering a new member special combo deal. Membership in the organization, combined with a Field Day registration -- an $80 value -- is being offered for $45.

To access this special combination rate and review the full list of events planned for this year, visit pasafarming.org/FarmBasedEducation or call 814-349-9856. This special rate gains attendees access to a quality educational program, a delicious locally sourced lunch, all of the benefits of membership, and access to PASA’s growing network.

This event is funded through the USDA Organic Research & Education Initiative grant Value-Added Grains for Local and Regional Food Systems.

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