Harvested sweet potatoes are loaded onto a trailer at the Kirby Farms in Mechanicsville, VA on Friday, Sept. 20, 2013. The hand picked potatoes are taken to an onsite-heated warehouse to cure, a process that toughens the skin and brings the sweetness to a level normally expected in markets. Kirby Farms devotes 200 acres v to eggplant, spinach, beets, tomato, jalapeno peppers, melons and a variety of greens. Soybeans and small grain are grown on the remaining 300 acres. Using rotational crop practices allows Kirby Farms to double and triple crop yields. Wholesalers, who buy from this farm, sell the produce to major supermarkets in the Mid-Atlantic region, from North Carolina to Maryland. Restaurants in the local area prepare and serve the local bought produce to patrons in the Richmond, VA metropolitan area. For more information about this farm operation, please see the photoset description at flic.kr/s/aHsjLgeD4J. For information about the USDA, please go to www.usda.gov. USDA photo by Lance Cheung.
April 30, 2014
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