Mellissa Strong day 7

Today, Marzo 7 we started our day out at the Green Giant processing facility. Wow, is all I have to say. This was so neat. We were not aloud take pictures or brig anything in for bio security reasons. We were dressed in white coats, hairnets, ear plugs, glasses and bump caps. As we walked through the factory we saw stainless steel equipment, and similar attire. This is all apart of HACCP, which stands for Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point. Today we watched the production of Broccoli. We watched the process from the cutting of the broccoli to washing and steaming and getting ready to be packaged. Along with broccoli they were also processing Brussel sprouts. It’s amazing to be applying this to everyday life. Lets think, if there is A green giant package of vegetables and it was a product of Mexico, I can say that I have been to the place that processed it.

We also learned that General Mills, owns Green Mills owns Green Giant, Pillsbury, Old ElPaso, and Yopliat and many other popular brands. And I thought they only made cereal! Also we learned that this General Mills (Green Giant) plant in Irapuato accounts for 20% of the labor force. That’s a pretty large number. Also, we learned that General Mills paired with NASA, a number of years ago and NASA then used the Green Giant products for the astronauts.

After we went to Green Giant we went to a similar plant called Frugo. Frugo sells to places like hienz and ConAgra. This plant was much smaller but just as cool. However, in this plant we saw the process from the unloading of the truck to the reloading of the truck. This process take about 8 hours total. We saw the unloading, washing, cutting, flash freezing and packaging of the broccoli. This small family run plant puts out about 3.5 tons per hour.
This was one of my favorite parts of the trip. It’s different to see how he foods actually processed.

This really isn’t part of the educational part of the blog but we ate at Pollo Feliz. I guess this is what we consider a KFC. General menu includes chicken dinners, chicken nuggets, Quesadillas and tacos. Trying to communicate in English is Always a challenge and can be quite exciting. I really should get to learn another language.

Anyway, after we ate we went to an asparagus ranch.

This farmer grows 150 acres. He is currently harvesting 120 acres 2 to 3 times a year, for 4 months. Asparagus is not usually harvested until it hits 2 and a half years and it lives for about 8. Vincenti, the rancher uses ditch irrigation to water his crops. He said he chose asparagus to grow because it doesn’t use as much water as many other crops. For fertilizer to help the soils, he rancher composts.

He uses these hair sheep to sell to a private buyer for lamb BBQ and uses the manure for compost and for fertilizer. The manure supplies a lot of nutrients provided by he manure like sulfur and nitrogen.

Not only is food processing neat, but its also cool to see how other agriculture systems work. All the dots Are starting to connect on how the world depends on each other and how we are more interconnected than we think.

And here’s a completely unrelated but beautiful sunset on our way back to Guanajuato. Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone


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