The Ribbon on the New Factory is Cut!

We have finally cut the ribbon on Meds & Food for Kids New Factory! The MFK staff, farmers, and families are all delighted to have achieved this tremendous milestone.

Early in the day, we were all busy with preparation: sweeping and scrubbing, planting a new round of peanut crops, and hanging festive decorations. Despite gloomy skies our whole team remained hopeful that the day would turn out as bright and sunny as the occasion. Luckily for us all, it did!

By 9 o’clock guests had begun arriving. Each was given a tour of our new state-of-the-art factory, starting with our peanut depot. The shelves in this room are stacked high with big bags of recently purchased Haitian peanuts. Each bag of “pistache” (peanuts in Creole) weighs a hefty 48 pounds.

Our peanut depot
Our peanut depot

These local peanuts are then hulled and sorted by our Haitian staff, and at each step only the best peanuts are selected for processing.  Our guests were able to witness this process up close and personal before moving on to our roasting room.

Thanks to a generous gift by USAID, MFK now has a higher capacity and more efficient new peanut roaster. The roasting process has been reduced to less than fifteen minutes, from start to finish.

Our new large capacity roaster!
Our new large capacity roaster!

 

Guests were then taken into the Raw Materials Warehouse, which is where we store all of the ingredients needed to make our Medika Mamba and other malnutrition prevention products. The warehouse is certainly a surprise coming out of the roasting room, what with its lofty ceilings, pair of forklifts, and three stories worth of ingredients. Plus, there is the faint whiff of cocoa in the air.

In our old factory we were only able to store small volumes of ingredients and unload and load them sack by sack. With our new sizable warehouse the ordering, purchasing, transport and storage processes are all streamlined and thus, we are much more cost effective and efficient; evidenced by all the Medika Mamba that’s finished!

Finished product!
Finished product!

Finally, guests were able to see our “clean” production floor, requiring an outfitting of booties, a lab coat, and hair net. On the production floor our team mixes, grinds, makes, and packages our Medika Mamba. Products are then tested in our lab to ensure that during each step along the way they are safe and healthy for the “littlest peanuts” that we treat.

Our state-of-the-art Production Floor and Machinery
Our state-of-the-art Production Floor and Machinery

Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy prevented a number of our distinguished guests from making it to the festivities. Whether stuck at home or in the Caribbean, they were all deeply missed. Those folks who were able to make it were treated to ceremonial speeches from Dr. Wolff and several Haitian dignitaries, followed by lunch and the official inauguration of the building.

Thanking our guests for making it to the event!
Thanking our guests for making it to the event!

To you, who helped make this day and progress possible, we are so very grateful. This factory isn’t just a state-of-the-art building in Haiti (a feat unto itself and the only one of it’s kind) it is truly a milestone in the path to a brighter future for Haiti’s children.

Thank you! Thank you!