Published on November 9th, 2011 | by Rhonda Winter2
Help OlyKraut Grow: Investing in Our Local Food System
OlyKraut is a western Washington based sauerkraut company that is dedicated to helping sustainably strengthen the region’s local food system. They make unpasteurized fermented sauerkraut, using fresh produce from local farms to create a nutritious healthy probiotic rich food that will help improve both your digestion and immune system.
The small vibrant enterprise that Evergreen alumnae Summer Bock and Sash Sunday created just a few years ago is thriving; however, one of their main problems is being able to produce enough delicious raw sauerkraut to keep up with their growing demand. Presently they need to invest in a more efficient industrial strength food processor and new fermentation crocks in order to be able to make enough kraut to meet their customers’ needs.
Much in the same manner that OlyKraut supports and reaches out to many small local farmers in the area, the burgeoning food business is now seeking help from each of you to be able to grow their young company. Sash and Summer have just created a short video to explain why raw fermented vegetables are so very important for our diet, as well as what their growing business now needs in order to thrive:
Just a few days after posting their cabbage generating project on IndieGoGo, OlyKraut already raised nearly fifteen percent of the funds that are needed to expand their business. Here OlyKraut explains a few salient details about their present needs for this locally sourced investment:
“Currently we are using a 1966 Univex mixer that is very hard on our bodies. We are concerned that one of us (or our workers) could get hurt if we keep using this old machine.
This food processor is very slow at shredding and has poor ergonomics; we had to modify it to make it functional for it’s present use. Now it takes 105 minutes to shred all of the cabbage we need for one batch of sauerkraut; with the new processor it will take only 17 minutes.
Since we made it into the Olympia Farmer’s Market this season, our greatly increased sales have shot up and nearly wiped out our back stock. We are ready to take off this year and create a business that is not only sustainable for the food system, but for us as well.
If we can slowly expand in this manner, we will be able to make much more sauerkraut, which means that we buy more cabbage from our region in the following years. Last year alone, we bought 4,000 pounds of produce from Thurston County. As we increase our production, we create more demand for local farms to produce for us, which creates more money that stays in our local economy.
We’re dedicated to growing our local food system, which benefits everyone, not just us in the Pacific Northwest. We’ll show you how we’re making it happen.”
If you feel passionately about helping to build a stronger regional food economy in the Pacific Northwest, or if you would like to show your support for these hard-working women, please consider making a donation to this crowdsourced project that will help strengthen Olympia’s local food system.