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Wishing for more green
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am going to my first market the first Saturday in February, and I want to keep my gourmet lettuces fresh, very sensitive to heat. Selling by the bag. Was thinking some of tray on top of tray with ice water in the bottom tray and then bag as they come up? What are your thoughts?
 

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What I do is fill gallon freezer bags about 1/3 to 1/2 full and freeze them laying flat on trays. I also use some of those blue ice blocks. I use these ice bags to fill the bottom of trays. I then drape cheap fabric over the ice and trays. The fabric does two things. Most importantly, it prevents the bags of greens from having direct contact with the ice. It also makes the trays look better. Then I just pack my bags of greens, with the tops of the bags open, into the trays. If I only have a little of each type of green, I often use seed starting trays. The ones with no holes. If I have more to sell, I use those cheap covered totes that you can find in a bunch of sizes.

I like using the ice in the freezer bags because they're less messy than loose ice or ice water. Plus, I just stick them back in the freezer when I get home to have them ready for the next market.

Another thing that really helps me is to take a spray bottle filled with ice water and mist into the open tops of the bags every now and then. That really helps to refresh them if they start to wilt a bit. Good luck with your first market.
 

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Always Thinking
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I use empty pastic juice bottles, filled with water and then frozen. This is my favorite shape. The corners are square, sides are flat - fits the freezer and coolers better. I remove the labels. :


Using plastic trays - stand gallon bags of lettuce/lettuce mix in rows, with ice bottles between rows.

For full heads of leaf lettuces and buttercrunch lettuces, I like to leave the roots on, but rinse them clean (no dirt remaining). Put about 6" water in the bottom of a cooler, add a couple ice bottles, then "float" the heads in the water. Having the roots in cool water really helps to keep them fresh and crisp.

I always alternate the color of my lettuces too. Green heads or bags between red, etc. Makes a very pretty display, and is easy for the customer to see the size of 1 head among a whole cluster of them.

Hope your first market goes well. I found it really easy to get a steady group of lettuce customers last eason. After 3 weeks, I had regulars that sought me out for lettuce and spinach every week.
 

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We get small, free food-grade buckets from the local grocery store, the bakery section. I think icing comes in them ... we fill them part way with water and freeze. The handle makes them easy to move, and the ice lasts through market. We bag our lettuce and put them in a cooler with two ice buckets for transport. Towel between the lettuce and ice, which often we dump from the buckets directly into the cooler.
At market, we flip open the top of the cooler so folks can see the lettuce. Quintin
 

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We fill up a cooler with ice cubes for transport (either made at home or bought.)
We built a box from wood and then lined it with pond liner and put a drain on the one end. Its roughly 3ft by 6ft. We fill the bottom with the above mentioned ice and then put all of our lettuces, greens, salad mix etc into this "box". Dh built it so the legs screw on and come off easy for transport. Its its own unit. For the lettuce mixes and braising mixes we found that the clear storage totes fit 2 perfectly across so we fill those with the bulk greens. Metal ice bucketslook really nice to store bundled chard and such in. We also put a bucket under the drain and use that really cold water to mist the greens with later in the day.
corry
 

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Wishing for more green
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Okay, thanks, going to hunt and see what kind of trays I can pick up locally and apply your ideas to! Here goes, my heart is already pounding!
 

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I freeze jugs put them in a cooler and keep the lettuce bags there and only display 4 bags at a time on the table(they will not buy if they dont have a large selection) I have even accidentally saved the best for last before in the case of taters and others and even if it is twice as much it will sit there an hour and sell like hot cakes while their are several. Hate that as somtimes the umbrella does not shade and the lettuce wilts quick. always open the bags or it condensates and you cant see them (they will not buy then) Have a good market april 5th cant come to soon for me as I am running low on $.
 
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