More Information on the CSA Program
We currently offer two share sizes; a full share and a partial share. The full share provides enough vegetables for a large family or 1-2 vegetarians or vegans. The partial share provides enough for 2-3 people or a family with young children (it has worked for single folk as well, the just have to be aware of how much they can use in a week and be certain any extras can be stored for longer periods). We charge $500 a season for a full share and $300 for the partial share.
For the first time this year, we will be offering add-ons to the CSA share. These are items from nearby farms that we ourselves do not produce. The options are a bread share, an organic egg share, a non-organic egg share, a cheese share and an organic chicken share. For those of you who don’t want these things on a regular basis but may want them occasionally, we do offer the bread, eggs and cheese for sale on a week to week basis as well, along with milk.
Besides the vegetables and herbs members receive week, there are some other benefits as well. Each week, members receive an email telling them what should in the week’s share so they can plan. Recipes are available if members need ideas for how to cook their vegetables. Seconds or surplus vegetables are offered for free from time to time. We also offer honey as part of the share when it is available.
Most CSA programs in our area pre-box the shares with an identical assortment of goods in each box, regardless if a member likes everything in it or not. We do things a bit differently. At our farm pick-up, we lay out all the produce we have for the week and assign a certain number of points to each type of vegetable. Then members come in and select a variety of items whose points add up to a certain number (usually 22 for full shares and 13 for partial shares). At the New Eastern Market, we do have to pre-box items for members so we can be certain that there is enough there for them when they pick-up, but they do get a chance to send us their selections before pick-up day so they can get what they want too. This method is perhaps more work for us, but members appreciate being able to choose their items. This way they can pass on something that they still have at home, choose items that store well if they won’t be home to use perishable veggies or double up on something that they’re going to need more of that week.
For anyone new to the CSA model, members do pay in advance for their season’s produce. We are grateful for that because many of our major operating cost are at the beginning of the year (i.e. seeds, trays for transplants, etc.) before we have anything to sell. The income from CSA members gives us the financial breathing room until the first harvest and allows us to focus more on growing high quality vegetables for our members.
As most are probably aware, Mother Nature is highly unpredictable. Weather changes each year and a bug that we may never have seen before may appear in droves all of sudden. Because of this we can occasionally lose a crop. However, we grow such a wide variety of vegetables and herbs that, even though we can’t necessarily guarantee that members will get a particular vegetable, we can guarantee that they will get their money’s worth of produce. On top of that, we do sometimes buy vegetables to replace a lost crop if another nearby organic farm happens to have them.
One of the many reasons that people join a CSA program is so they will know exactly where it comes from and how it was grown. We respect that and for that reason, members are welcome to visit the farm. We are always happy to show them around and answer any questions they have.
So what’s the best reason to join our CSA program? You will get 21 weeks worth of super fresh, nutritious food that is untainted with chemicals and grown right in your neck of the woods. If you are interested in joining, please either email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (717) 495-4087 and we will answer your questions and provide you with membership forms.