Bean ProcessingIn summer months, the huge demand for shelled beans and peas creates many tasks for peers. The process of chilling, shelling, and packaging of fresh butter beans, field peas, and other legumes has evolved over the years.

“With increased market support for our locally grown vegetables, we have build a dedicated areas down the hill from Happy Patch Market,” explains Perry Wellness Center founder and CEO Stuart Perry. “As the vegetables arrive, they are unloaded in the shade and placed in a new large cooler. These vegetables never get too hot. After barrel or hand shelling, the beans are again chilled and await cleaning and bagging by peer staff.”

Increased market business has created new demands on staff and peers. Stuart notes, “It is a different format of jobs at Perry Wellness Center. Our peers and staff realize that market sales help us to provide the services we do at Perry Wellness Center. We appreciate our increasing customer base.”

With increased efficiencies in bean processing and other market tasks, peers learn valuable work lessons, and the market continues to thrive as a both a fundraiser for mental health services and a door to the larger community for individuals with mental illness or addictive disease.

In the photo above, peers prepare shelled peas for packaging.

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