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The Word on our 2011 Fall CSA


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Ben’s Produce offers vegetables, strawberries & flowers of the highest quality and taste in the Triangle. Our mission is to strive for healthier people, community, agriculture and planet by growing and sharing the best tasting food we can. Our farming practices may surpass organic guidelines but we choose not to be certified because we are confident the quality and taste of our produce, as well as our direct relationship with you, speak to our commitment to healthy food and holistic agriculture. 2011 will be our second year farming as Ben’s Produce, though we have been farming with family and friends for many years.

CSA is a mutually beneficial relationship between us. By making a seasonal investment in our farm with a CSA share, you become a seasonal farm member who shares the rewards and risks of the harvest season with us, your farmers. Your investment allows us to afford annual start-up costs, to pay ourselves fair wages, and to share the many risks in growing food. In return, we provide you and your family with abundant, fresh, healthy and local food. Our food not only tastes better and lasts longer, it’s also helps us all nourish local agriculture, economy and environment.  Taste the difference!
Is CSA right for your family?
It is good to be aware of the rewards and challenges involved in CSA. If you and your family want to explore the wonderful tastes of our farm-fresh food by eating it straight from your CSA pickup bag or transformed in a delightful dish you cooked, CSA is for you! If you want to expand your taste-bud horizons and strengthen your skills at cooking and preparing fresh food, CSA is for you! If you want to be surprised with new vegetables, CSA is for you! If you want to eat healthily and enjoy eating, CSA is for you!

Please understand that nature’s abundance varies. What you receive is based on our harvest schedule which is subject to the weather, pests, disease and a large myriad of influences. Some weeks your CSA share may be less than the retail farmers market value we try to maintain. However, we usually provide more bounty than you could buy at market value. If you find yourself with too many items, do not despair, share the bounty with others! .

Members Receive:

  • About two grocery bags of at least 7-10 seasonal organic vegetables and herbs (more for large shares).
  • A weekly newsletter with produce information, cooking and storage tips, recipes and segments about life on and off the farm. 
  • Exclusive access to an online recipe-sharing site. 

Members Also Enjoy: 

  • Convenient pick up locations and times throughout the week. 
  • Adds ons including, bread, cheese, coffee, tea, pork, chicken, lamb and beef. 
  • Access  to our farm for volunteering, exploring and relaxing. 
  • Invitations to on-farm events, such as our second annual OktoberFEAST. 
  • New friends who share your interest in good food and good farming.

How It Works
Join Ben’s Produce CSA by purchasing a CSA share at the beginning of the season. You then visit the pickup site of your choosing to pack your own vegetables from the harvest table. We will post a guide at the stand explaining what each share contains that week. The Fall 2011 CSA harvest season runs for 10 weeks from  early October through December.

Pickup Sites: We have three weekly CSA pickup sites – 

Raleigh Five Points CSA – Tuesday evenings from 4:30pm to 6:30pm, 1911 Bernard St., Raleigh 27608. 

Please consider signing up with the Raleigh Five Points CSA Yahoo Group through the link above, to access information regarding the pickup site and opportunities to support the other farmers who attend as well as local food events and information.

The Farm, Wednesday evenings from 4pm to 7pm, 1000 McLemore Rd., Clayton 27520

Western Wake Farmers Market, Saturday morning from 8am to 12pm at the1225 Morrisville Carpenter Rd, Cary 27519.

Sharing with others: If you choose to split a share with family or friends, please let us know on your registration so we may avoid confusion.  
Flexibility: We know you may miss pickup for many reasons. We prefer 24 hours notice, if possible. You may send friends or family in your place to pickup if you wish. Missed pickup is forfeit of that weeks share but we will try to make other accommodations if possible.

Communication: Our main mode of communication is email. We will send all members weekly emails usually a day or two before pickup. Our emails are meant as pickup reminders and usually include farm updates, a list of that weeks veggies, a link to our latest blog entry and any notifications regarding pickup. Our blog functions as our farm newsletter that includes farm news, anecdotes, reflections, recipes, photographs and more.

 COLLABORATIVE CSA ADD ONS
We offer our collaborative CSA service to bring you the best food from farmers and producers who attend Western Wake Farmer’s Market with us. We will send you an email detailing this service after you sign up for our Fall CSA. We strongly urge patronizing these folks if you pick up at market instead of using this service. 
  •        Fickle Creek Farm, Efland NC – Pork, Chicken, Lamb
  •       Smith Angus Farm, Snow Camp NC – Angus Beef 
  •      Funderburk & Pate, Meadow NC – Bread & Baked Goods made with their own grain
  •        Hillsborough Cheese Co., Hillsborough NC – Cheese
  •        Muddy Dog Coffee, Morrisville NC – Coffee, Tea, Grits

Vegetable Availability
October:  Scallions, Bok Choi, Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Collards, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mustard, Napa Cabbage, Tatsoi, Beets, Carrots, Daikon, Radish, Turnip, Arugula, Chard, Fennel, Lettuce, Spinach, Peas, Herbs
November: Scallions, Bok Choi, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Collards, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mustard, Napa Cabbage, Tatsoi, Beets, Carrots, Daikon, Radish, Turnip, Arugula, Chard, Fennel, Lettuce, Spinach, Herbs
December: Scallions, Bok Choi, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Collards, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mustard, Tatsoi, Beets, Carrots, Daikon, Radish, Turnip, Arugula, Chard, Fennel, Lettuce, Spinach, Herbs

  
Pricing
Small Share – $125
Our Small Share is the same size as the Regular Share but is distributed every 2 weeks instead of every week.

Regular Share – $200
Our Regular Share is a suitable amount of produce for a small household of 1 to 3 people, or one well eating vegetarian to eat for one week. 
Large Share – $300
Our Large Share is a suitable amount of produce for a large household of 4+ people, or a couple of well-eating vegetarians to eat for one week.
Payment Options
Our CSA is first come, first serve. You must send payment to secure a share. We prefer you send us Full Payment but our Payment Plan of a deposit and consecutive payments are accepted for your flexibility.We will use your CSA share payments to purchase much needed materials for building three high tunnels. These high tunnels cost about $800 a piece and we will construct them ourselves. They will serve as unheated greenhouses and will allow us to provide you with nutritious, wholesome food throughout the year. It will also allow us to provide you with early spring and summer crops. Please consider paying for your CSA share in full as soon as possible, if this is feasible for you. We thank you for your support! 

Full Payment – Enclose a check for the total due.
Payment Plan – Enclose a deposit to secure your share. Please send the amounts listed below 30 days and 60 days after the date of your deposit.

Due Date
Small Share
Regular Share
Large Share
Deposit
$50
$75
$100
30 days
$50
$75
$100
60 days
$25
$50
$100

You can find our Fall 2011 CSA brochure here. Please use the brochure to sign up with us. Please enclose a copy with your information and payment. We hope you will afford us the honor of being your farmers in 2011 and we are looking forward to a great year. We wouldn’t be able to be farmers without you and your support!
Sincerely,
Benjamin Shields & Patricia Parker
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