Turning surplus produce into valuable products

A simple jar of pickles can reduce food waste, combat climate change, and help regional farms survive. 

How our farmer-value program works

We provide small-batch, on-demand processing for Massachusetts farms, allowing farmers to expand their offerings and turn surplus crops into revenue. 

We invest all of the upfront costs to develop, scale, price, and get regulatory approvals for basic recipes—like tomato sauce, pickles, pesto, and applesauce. 

Farmers pay a set unit fee and deliver their surplus produce to CommonWealth Kitchen where our trained manufacturing team turns it into a finished product with the farm’s logo, ready to sell at farm stands, CSAs, or other retail outlets. 

Provide Revenue to Farmers

Most small and mid-sized farms in New England increasingly juggle a mix of wholesale and direct-to-consumer sales strategies in order to survive.  Farmer value-added products provide farmers an opportunity to turn their extra or “ugly” crops into much needed revenue.  

 

Reduce Food Waste

Over 40% of all food grown in the U.S. is thrown out, composted, or plowed under and uneaten food in landfills accounts for roughly 20% of U.S. methane emissions. By turning surplus produce into pickles, sauces, and other products, we keep these crops out of the waste stream and help combat climate change.

“Customers today really want perfection. They won’t buy a tomato if it has a slight blemish. The tomatoes are still great quality, but they maybe got knocked around during transport and got a bruise...We spent money planting, trellising, and harvesting. This puts money back in our pocket.”

-Dave’s Dumaresq, owne of Farmer Dave's

Our process, season by season.

Step 1

In the spring, we work with our farm partners to complete paperwork, get initial production estimates, and design product labels.

Step 2

During the growing season, we schedule production runs with farmers on a rolling basis. We work together to schedule product delivery and value-added production(s). Farmers drop off raw produce on the day that we have scheduled.

Step 3

We process the crops, jar them, print and apply custom labels, and pack up the finished product. When the production is complete (typically a few weeks after drop off), we schedule a pickup and provide follow-up with notes from the production run along with an invoice. 

Our 2020 Farm Partners

Allandale farm
Clark Farm
Farmer Daves Logo
Morning Glory Farm Logo
Stillman's farm logo

Preventing food waste one pickle at a time
In 2020, year when so many restaurant and institutional wholesale customers were making dramatically smaller (or zero) purchases:

1 +

regional farms supported

1

pounds of surplus veggies we’ve saved

1

jars of value-added produce created