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November 7, 2017

'Ugly veggie' outlet boosts Maine farms

The Farm Stand in South Portland’s Knightville neighborhood is providing a new outlet for Maine farms by taking less-than-perfect vegetables and fruits and either transforming them into prepared meals for sale or selling them at a discount.

The Forecaster reported the market also implemented a compost program to convert food waste into electricity with a bio-digester. In the last year, sending waste to Agri-cycle Energy in Exeter, the market has diverted 11.6 tons of food waste.

Co-owner Penny Jordan told the paper that reducing food waste makes more food available.

“There are a lot of people who don’t have access to fresh local products, and if we don’t figure out a way to leverage all the food we have grown then we are doing an injustice,” Jordan said.

Co-owner Ben Slayton said that transforming ugly fruits and end cuts into soups and meals allows the market to turn otherwise unusable excess produce and leftovers into something valuable they could sell.

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