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CSA 2021 Updates

Welcome to CSA 2021!

Thank you for your commitment to eat fresh, eat healthy, and eat local! We sure are excited, and honored, to be chosen as YOUR farmers for the upcoming season!! We’ve got some changes coming this year, including a new CSA software (goodbye Harvie!), and we’re excited. This blog post will serve as a hub for our CSA family to receive weekly updates as we Countdown to June … count down to the first week of June, what we anticipate to be the start of our 2021 CSA Program! Feel free to check back here each Monday to see how things are going and to get our latest news and updates.

March 29 … Find someone to share your share with & SAVE!

Folks often struggle with deciding what vegetable size share to buy, and it’s common to have members upgrade to a larger size once the program starts. In these uncertain times, we’re hearing that a little extra Jersey Fresh produce to can or freeze (I’ll send you videos on how to do it!) for the winter might not be a bad idea.

When signing up for CSA most folks don’t look at the size options & cost in this way… If you find a friend/neighbor/family member to split your CSA with, you’ll save on the cost of your CSA share.  I’ll explain, using our Washington pricing. If you’re a So. Brunswick CSA member, you’ll save even more!!

Personal share – $310 (often considered a 1/4 share)
Half share – $400
Full share – $560

Look at the pricing and it’s obvious… If you now have a personal share ($310) and upgrade to a half share by finding a partner to split it with, you and your partner will each pay $200 …. that’s a savings of $110 on almost the same amount of produce AND the half share usually gets a little more of a variety each week.

If you now have a half share ($400) and upgrade to a full share by finding a partner to split it with, you and your partner will each pay $280 …. that’s less than the cost of a personal share!! And that’s a savings of $120 for the same amount of produce you would receive from a half share AND the full shares do get a little more of a variety each week.

For those of you that are picking up your share at a host site- if you split your CSA share with someone  you’ll save on your delivery fee too!!

Each CSA share comes in one bag and you are responsible for sharing. That can be an inconvenience. And yes, there may be times that certain items cannot be shared whole (melons, cabbage, etc.), but with that cost savings, you can buy an extra melon or you can cut the melon, cabbage, etc, in half to split it.

If you want to upgrade your veggie share, you can go into your online Farmigo account and make that change yourself. If you would rather we make the change, just email us and ask!

Transplants

March 23 …

Spring is finally here! Hopefully Mother Nature will cooperate & we’ll have some great weather. We still need some freezing nights to keep our berry fields & orchards in check so they don’t go into bloom early and get frozen out closer to our frost free dates. And of course some warmer, drier days will allow the farmers to work the fields and get ready for planting.

Our greenhouse seedlings continue to grow well … and that’s a great thing, as there’s just 10 weeks until CSA starts!

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March 16 …

Jersey Fresh Fruit Shares. They’re popular … CSA members receive 6 fruit shares per year, randomly spaced throughout the season. Fruit share availability depends on when local fruit is available.

We don’t grow a whole lot of fruit, so we don’t include a lot of fruit in our regular vegetable CSA share. Our fruit share was designed for just that reason! Although we do include our homegrown fruit when we are able to (peaches, nectarines, strawberries, blackberries, apples), we do try to include some additional fruit (pears, plums, blueberries) that we are able to buy locally from farmers that share our same growing techniques.

Want to add a fruit share? You can do that yourself via your online account!

ft.chicksEggs

March 9 …

Have you signed up for our farm fresh egg share? If not, it’s not too late. You can simply go into your online CSA account and make an update to include eggs. With previous CSA software our members were not able to make account changes themselves. Farmigo is different! (We told you you’d love farmigo!)

Although the eggs in our egg shares are predominantly brown, we do have a few hens that lay blue/green eggs, so you just might find one of their eggs in your egg carton from time to time. Occasionally the egg size may differ too. Sometimes the hens get stressed (HOT weather, thunderstorms, etc) and lay smaller eggs. The actual inside is usually the same size, it’s usually just the shell that is smaller.

If you haven’t tried farm fresh eggs, what are you waiting for? Our CSA members love them!

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March 2 …

Just 13 more weeks until Jersey Fresh season … oh, we can’t wait!

Here’s some links that you might find useful the next few weeks …

February 22 … Update your online CSA account!

An online CSA account was made for all members that signed up early in the season before we started using the Farmigo CSA management software program.  You will need to update your account to make sure your contact info & email addresses are correct. Your online account will be your ‘communication hub’ this season!

Tim3

February 15 …

Not much has changed this week other than we are one week closer to the start of CSA … and we’ve sure got lots of growing to do between now & then. Tim has been busy with crop planning – spring can’t come soon enough!

The Farmigo staff has been creating the online accounts for CSA members that signed up via our online store before we started using our Farmigo software. They should be done any day.

Don’t forget about our new CSA Referral Program. Our early season sign up ($25 discount) ends March 15 … help your friend, neighbors, & family take advantage of those savings and you’ll get a $20 farm market gift card if they sign up & add your name where it asks how they heard about the CSA program. The best part? There’s no limit to how many gift cards you can receive! Pass this link along for all the CSA details.

seedlings

February 8 …

The weather outside certainly is frightful, but the greenhouse is toasty warm so our little seedlings can grow! That’s always the case … we don’t see the coldest temps of the year until we start heating the greenhouses.

Our seedlings are growing well. We always put our newly planted tomato & pepper seed trays on heated mats to help get the seeds sprouted. The electric heat of the mats warm the soil where the roots grow, ultimately shortening germination time. Other crops that don’t take so long to germinate were started in between the recent snowfalls. They were started on the greenhouse floor without the heat mats, so they’ll take a little longer to germinate and grow. Those newly started crops include onions, leeks, shallots, & various lettuces.

Homegrown Produce

February 1 …

Uugh, what a week this is going to be! We’re certainly not happy about ALL this snow. Although we do gladly welcome some snow each winter (it’s good for the soil & the farm dogs love it), this is just ridiculous. The guys were on ladders for over an hour in the height of the storm pushing snow off one of the greenhouses so it didn’t collapse.

Our new CSA software is now up & running … we worked out a few glitches, so now we just need to create online accounts for each of our members. Once we have that done we’ll share Farmigo with you … we think you’ll love it!

Homegrown greenhouse tomatoes

January 25 …

And, we’re growing! A few tomato, pepper, and onion plants have been started in the greenhouse … the promise of a new season!! Those 3 crops take the longest to grow from seed to transplant, so they’re started much earlier than the other crops. BUT, it won’t be long until we start thinking about the start of those other crops too!

Although our early season CSA sign up with incentives offer is now over, we are still offering early season sign up with a $25 discount … so if you know of anyone who may be interested in joining CSA, let them know. And now that we’re using the Farmigo CSA software, we are able to offer a REFERRAL PROGRAM too! Just have your friend, neighbors, or family sign up for CSA and add your name where it asks how they heard of the CSA program … you’ll get a $20 farm market gift card. Yup, it’s that easy, and there is no limit of how many gift cards you can receive!

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January 18 …

Oh, what we’d do for a real, ripe, homegrown tomato right now!! That picture is mouthwatering, isn’t it?  This mild winter weather sure has us all thinking about spring. What about you??! The guys are consumed in all kinds of winter projects, from fixing tractors and horse fence to building a new chicken house and painting wagons. BUT, the project we’re most excited about is our new CSA software system called Farmigo. Tim has been busy for days inputting, uploading, downloading, and tweaking … and it’s almost ready! Once compete on our end, you’ll be able to manage your CSA shares via your own online account. Cindy has been busy creating a new CSA Handbook filled with online account how-to’s, CSA expectations, and a special how to use, store, and freeze produce section. Oh, and if you wanted to take advantage of our early sign up incentives and haven’t paid in full yet (the deadline for full payments was Jan. 15), keep an eye on your inbox. We’ll be sending an email regarding that shortly! And since we’re counting down to the beginning of the CSA program in June, it’s only right to announce that it’s just 19 weeks away. There’s a lot that will happen in those 19 weeks, but it’ll be here before you know it!

January 11 …

Thank you to all who have already signed up and have chosen to take advantage of our best offer of the year, an early sign up savings of $50 AND your choice of a $25 VonThun Farm gift card or a pair of farm season passes (valid for both of our farm locations) if paid for in full by January 15. Unfortunately we were not able to ask which incentive you prefer (gift card or season passes) through our online sign up, but no worries … we’ll reach out to you to get your preference soon after our early sign up incentive period is over. Oh, and we’re excited to share that we found a new CSA software we hope to use to replace Harvie. We have a meeting with a software rep later this week to see if the software is the right fit for our program … stay tuned!

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