March Update on Teff Cleaning Facility
We’re entering our, hopefully, last month of construction! Now that the insulation has gone in (all thanks to some very warm days in January) and all the electrical, we can focus on moving our existing equipment that we’ll continue using and start installation of the new equipment.
We entered into this project thinking we’d just be cleaning and processing teff (more on that in this blog post), but as we talked with more people we realized there was a need for a buckwheat dehuller. In the United States, most buckwheat that you see in the store is a dark grey almost purplish flour. That’s because it was milled with the hull on it. The hull is edible but has a bitter taste to it. The hull protects the groat which is on the inside - the groat on its own has a lighter nuttier flavor to it.
There aren’t very many people in the states removing that hull from the groat because it’s very difficult. In addition to that, the people that have the right equipment are far away from us and don’t necessarily have a gluten free facility. And that’s where we come in! We think the trend will go towards the dehulled buckwheat because it tastes better and has a wider range of uses even though it’s more difficult to produce.
We’ve already talked to another Michigan farmer who is growing buckwheat and is interested in selling us his. This is what we really wanted - a resource for smaller farmers to get an edge into a new market.
So back to the facility. New equipment is coming in, equipment is being moved and installed from the old barn to the new barn and we’re starting to plan a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate once it’s all done! Of course, my mum and I are planning the ceremony. It might be muddy but there will be lots of Teffola, extra boots and hats, and twinkle lights.