Chesapeake Chapter Tours Lancaster County

Written by NAMA on Friday, October 27, 2006 , 8:36 am

Leola Produce AuctionChesapeake NAMA chapter members and guests were treated to a tour of unique points of interest in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, on October 26th. The tour started with a stop at the Leola Produce Auction.  This co-op auction provides Lancaster County farmers, mostly Amish and Mennonite, with a marketing opportunity to sell produce and plants to buyers from New York, Boston, Philidelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C.  The first auction occured 20 years ago under the visionary leadership of the Nolt family. Today it involves over 3,000 farmers who sell over five and one-half million dollars of produce annually. The group got to see produce, including pumpkins, califlower, cabbage, and other late season produce, being brought to the auction in horse drawn wagons.  The highlight was seeing a pumpkin that weighed over 700 pounds (see photo).

The next stop was lunch at Yoder’s Family Restaurant.  The group was treated to an authentic Pennsylvania Dutch meal served family style with everything from ham loaf and fried chicken to “Shoo-Fly” pie and home made ice cream.  No one left hungry.

The tour concluded with a visit to the Case New Holland (CNH) farm equipment manufacturing plant in New Holland, PA.  Members and guests learned of the heritage of CNH from it’s begining with a single product, a windmill powered grinder. Today, CNH is a major force in agriculture production with full lines of tractors, tillage and harvesting equipment. The group then toured the round bailer manufacturing floor.

Case New Holland FactoryThanks to Sonja Wasco, Grant Heilman Photography, for making the arrangements for the Leola Produce Auction tour; to Kristine Harper, Case New Holland, for the plant tour arrangement; and to programing chair, Paul Redhage, FMC Agricultural Products, for the other meeting arrangements and publicity.

(P.S. — The 700 pound pumpkin sold at the auction for $100!)

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