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| Comfrey for Livestock |
Answered by: Richard Alan Miller
Question from: Gabe
Posted on: August 30, 2012
I have a large crop of comfrey plants here in Washington. I was wondering where to start trying to sell plants leaves or the extract.
Comfrey should grow quite well in Washington state. I grew a 40-acre field of it just south of you in the ‘80s. However, from your question it would appear that you may not know much about Comfrey, including the fact that it requires special equipment to handle it. This is not a crop for truck farming, or smaller farm ventures.
Primary markets lie as a leaf crop for alternative cattle feeds. The leaf must be taken prior to 10% flower production, or it becomes toxic with alkaloids harmful to the liver.
Most regional wholesalers in your area might be interested, but you won’t be able to sell more than 1,000 lbs. dried leaf. No one buys fresh leaf, and it does require a special drier to keep it from rotting.
You could used smaller quantities in a formula, and base your crop around a cottage industry. Salves (made from the root), and other linaments are in demand. And, local organic beef producers would most likely love to have access to this crop.