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This Noxious Weed Doubles As A Health Food
When FARM SHOW writer Jim Ruen saw an ad offering “U-Pick” burdock roots for sale, he decided to find out what was going on. He has plenty of those noxious weeds around his Minnesota farm and was hoping he might discover a new market for them. “Actually, I would pay someone to come and pick mine,” he jokes.
  Jim called the woman who had placed the ad and learned that she didn’t get any takers. She used the root herself for health reasons, and thought maybe others might be interested as well. She noted that burdock roots are available at the local food co-op and encocuraged Jim to call the store’s produce manager, Jason.
  “He said they buy their roots from Harmony Valley Farm, Chaseburg, Wis.,” Jim says. “Jason worked there for several summers and had been on the burdock digging team. Digging them is the challenge, which may be why Harmony Valley may be the only source for the roots in the upper Midwest. Jason noted that the roots grow as deep as 2 ft. so harvesting them is not easy.”
  After doing a little research, Jim learned that burdock roots can be fried, boiled, or dried to be powdered and taken as a supplement. Several studies have shown it has anti-inflamatory properties and detoxifies blood and promotes circulation. It might even inhibit some cancers, in particular pancreatic.
  “We decided to try some burdock at home. My wife, Wendy, found a simple recipe for roasting it by dicing it and coating it with a little olive oil. It tasted surprisingly good, with a nutty flavor. Given all the health benefits it’s supposed to have, we may try it again,” says Jim. For more info and recipes, go to www.happyvalleyfarm.com.

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2020 - Volume #44, Issue #4