Cass Peterson wrote:
> "Douglas M. Hinds" writes:
> >I gotta move some Luffas [...} Another source tells me that many oriental
> peoples eat immature luffas as a vegetable.
> There are two common varieties of luffa. Luffa acutangula is eaten at the
> immature stage. L. aegyptiaca, or dishcloth gourd, is not. Before you offer
> your luffas as food, be sure you're growing the right kind.
OK, then we have "Luffa acutangula" because they ARE good for eating purposes
and are NOT the same as the inedible varieties commonly found in these parts.
The project was set up for export purposes by a foreign expert who disappeared.
> It will probably be tough to move very many young luffas for eating.
You have no leads on that for us then? (I can do an "oriental vegetable"
search on my produce data base, one with a paca license and at least a 3.0
rating, if in the U.S. I can also pinpoint distributors in Japan, but I'd need
to determine if the immature fruit will hold up under refrigeration long enough
for a boat ride, or whether air freight would be required).
> Both species can be used as vegetable sponges, however. The fruits should be
> allowed to mature (the rind will toughen and turn dark). Harvest at that
> time, and allow to dry thoroughly. Then peel off the skin, remove the
> seeds, and voila! sponge.
> We don't do luffas anymore,
> but we used to sort them by size and physical
> appearance. Large ones with some discoloration got sold as utility sponges
> for washing the car or the woodwork (rugged, yet easy on the finish).
> Pretty ones went as bath sponges (great exfoliator). You can bleach the
> luffas if you want a lighter color.
The buyer might want to drive bleaching them.
> As sponges, luffas are not perishable. So you have plenty of time to corral
> a market. Try bath shops or specialty gift shops. Know anybody who makes
> handmade soaps that you could package with the sponges?
The time factor is recuperating the investment and paying bills. There is a
soap factory here but they make laudry soap. We talked once about doing
specialty soaps and the son (family business, and he's a chemical engineer
who's employed in Mexico City) said that the cost of having molds made for
specialty bath soaps would be prohibitive. I will check futher into that
though, but having an outlet for them interested in a luffa / coconut (for
example) soap package would help.
I've got data bases that should let me pinpoint a number of bath / specialty
gift shops, but the best one is yellow pages classification oriented and needs
me to pin point a city or least a 3 digit ZIP code. Wonder where in the U.S
people would be more likly to go for that? A less complete one lets me do a
SIC code search at the national level.
> Warning: peeling all those luffas is a lot of work.
We have a lot of hands, so if the market is there it'll get done. Thanks for
the tips. Anything further? (i.e., want to provide names for any of your old
> Cass Peterson
Thanks for the information.
Douglas M. Hinds, Director General Centro para el Desarrollo Comunitario y Rural A.C. (CeDeCoR) (Center for Community and Rural Development) - (non profit) Petronilo Lopez No. 73 (Street Address) Apdo. Postal No. 61 (Mailing Address) Cd. Guzman, Jalisco 49000 MEXICO U.S. Voice Mailbox: 1 630 300 0550 (e-mail linked) U.S. Fax Mailbox: 1 630 300 0555 (e-mail linked) Tel. & Fax: 011 523 412 6308 (direct) e-mail: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
To Unsubscribe: Email email@example.com with "unsubscribe sanet-mg". To Subscribe to Digest: Email firstname.lastname@example.org with the command "subscribe sanet-mg-digest".