Looking for Winnowing Equipment for Culinary Lavender Crop
Answered by: Richard Alan Miller
Question from: Maria Maze
Posted on: October 14, 2007

I have been searching for a source of winnowing equipment, such as air separation or air screen machines. I am looking for a way to speed the cleaning process for my crop of culinary lavender. It is a crop started from seed. This is my second harvest. I have a small line of culinary lavender food products, and will be expanding.

In all my searching, it seems that the stripping and cleaning of lavender buds from the stems is a hand process only. I find that so hard to believe. Is there a piece of equipment for a small farmer to use, to separate the chaff, leaves, etc. from the flower? If you have the time, I thank you in advance for your kind response.

It sounds like you have found a wonderful niche market for your Lavender flower heads. Winnowing is an easy process, mostly accomplished with a Rotocone separator. Most farms, especially corn growers will have old and used equipment of this type lying around. There are other technologies which will also accomplish your needs.

Some machinery will actually do it in the field, like a bean harvester, or related type combine. A silage chopper usually incorporates a separation unit on the draft. The term is usually referred to as scalping the chaff.

Please refer to my mini-book series "A Centralized Processing Facility" at www.herbfarminco.com. It includes where one can purchase used equipment, and the physics involved (for designing your own directions and scope). I am also available as an outside consultant to help expedite your efforts.

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