Stainless Steel Vegetable Washer

Dreamer: Dick Schwab

Business: Woodworks

Location: Solon, IA

Industry Contest: Ag Innovation

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The local foods movement is growing rapidly in Iowa and across the country. A significant challenge for all vegetable farmers is to wash their root vegetables (potatoes, carrots, etc) safely and efficiently. Barrel washers are the implement of choice. Food safety is a challenge with wooden washer.
Business Description:
I have designed a stainless steel barrel washer that is efficient, safe and affordable. We have refined the design through 4 iterations of the washer and used these prototypes to wash vegetables at Wild Woods Farm in 2014. The washer has been designed to be a highly efficient farm tool which is safe to use and easy to clean. The washer is designed to be shipped on a pallet to customers at a reasonable cost. Based on my research, there are no other small scale stainless steel barrel washers on the market.
The next major challenge to bring the product to market. The most cost effective sales channel is to create a web site describing the washer while showing it in operation. Social media will be used to draw potential customers to the site.
This product is targeted to the small to medium sized vegetable producers. There are approximately 30,000 producers in the US. Nearly all of them grow root vegetables and face the challenge of washing their product safely and efficiently. These producers are increasingly aware of more stringent food safety regulations. A compelling case can be made to these producers that they should purchase a stainless steel barrel washer.
The current market size is $135,000,000 (30,000 producers x a target selling price of $4,500). Assuming market penetration of 15 to 20% over 5 years, revenue potential is in excess of $20,000,000. The target profit margin is 15%.
Reason for Entering:
The product is complete and tested. The next major challenge is to cost effectively bring it to market. The target market is small to medium sized vegetable producers in the US. The most effective way to reach these potential customers is through a web site that describes the washer, shows it in operation and has testimonials from satisfied users.
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