Mobile Cooler Keeps Flowers Fresh

When Erin McMullen and Aaron Gaskey needed more storage for their fresh flower business, they put it on wheels. They had no more space in their small walk-in cooler and were planning to build a larger one in their barn using a CoolBot controller that lets you use a standard air conditioner to set up a cooler (Vol. 32, No. 5) now marketed by Store It Cold, LLC.
  “We quickly realized our planned cooler wouldn’t be big enough, plus we were delivering flowers farther and farther from the farm,” says McMullen. “We realized that if we put a cooler on a trailer, we could use it for deliveries too.”
  The couple started growing vegetables and a few flowers on a 1-acre plot. Eventually they moved their Raindrop Farms to a larger farm near Philomath, Ore., and their cut flower business took off. They sell flowers at 5 markets and do weekly and monthly deliveries to subscribers. They also offer bulk flowers or bulk buckets occasionally throughout the season, as well as flowers for weddings, including bulk flowers for brides who do their own arranging.
  They started out with a conventional 8 by 10-ft. cargo trailer, spraying foam on the ceiling and removing all interior wall panels. They attached pieces of 2-in. thick solid foam insulation to the walls and doors.
  “We cut a hole out for a window-style air conditioner and installed it and the CoolBot controller,” says McMullen. “My dad made a cover to go over the air conditioner to protect the fins while on the road.”
  It has been more than a year since the mobile cooler was finished and plans are in place to add more cooler space to the farm operation. Once again a CoolBot and air conditioner system will be used.
  “CoolBots are a godsend to those of us without the space or financial ability to buy a large production level cooler,” says McMullen.
  A video at www.farmshow.com shows how the mobile cooler was built.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Raindrop Farms (raindropfarms@peak.org; www.raindropfarms.net) or Store It Cold, 3132 Federal Blvd., Denver, Colo. 80211 (ph 888 871-5723; info@storeitcold.com; www.storeitcold.com).


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2016 - Volume #40, Issue #5