[Market-farming] Edamame

JOHN A HENDRICKSON jhendric at wisc.edu
Wed Aug 20 17:31:45 EDT 2008

For those new to edamame, the word actually means "branch bean" and has been traditionally sold on the plant in Japan.  However, convenience oriented shoppers in Japan (like in the US) seem to prefer them to be sold picked and packaged (or often frozen).

Several years ago I looked into mechanical harvest aids for them and discovered a design for a "stationary pod stripper" in the proceedings of an international vegetable conference held in Washington state some years ago.  Even though I imagined the plans would be beyond my engineering and construction skills, I tracked down the proceedings to see about building one.  In my head I was imagining something with gears and belts and such.  Imagine my mirth when I saw that all the plans called for a slab of wood with a tapered V-shaped notch cut in the middle.  All you do is secure the wood to something stable and draw the plants through the notch and everything gets stripped off (branches, leaves, and beans).  By positioning a reasonably powerful fan in the "drop area" you can blow most of the leaves away leaving just the beans in a collection basket.  This does not resolve the issue of some beans being fully plump and others immature, but it certainly was speedy and I could do 
it out of the sun.


----- Original Message -----
From: Marie Kamphefner <kampy at grm.net>
Date: Wednesday, August 20, 2008 10:02 am
Subject: Re: [Market-farming] Edamame
To: 'Market Farming' <market-farming at lists.ibiblio.org>

> Regards to the list:
> We grow edamame (except this year it drowned) but we had trouble 
> selling the
> whole plants like that in past years. So, we started pulling the plants,
> picking off the pods and putting them in clear clamshells. They sold like
> hotcakes! We noticed that lots of the pods weren't quite ready, so we
> started picking the filled ones in the field and letting the smaller ones
> mature and picked them again later for more yields. I believe we got 
> $4.00 a
> pint for certified organic. It was a lot easier to pull the plants and 
> sit
> under a shade tree to pick the pods!
> Marie in Missouri
> Is anyone growing Edamame? We are trying some for the 1st time this year,
> and it is ready for harvest. We are thinking about cutting the whole plant,
> doing a quick rinse to remove dirt/mud and selling it as is. Is anyone 
> doing
> this? Pricing? I think I can get two dollars a stem at our market.
> Thanks,
> Carla Maness
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