HUNTER HILL CSA
Member Agreement for 2021
As a member of Hunter Hill CSA, you will enjoy a share of fresh, tasty, local, seasonal food. As the farmers, we’ll provide you with that. The following are the practicalities and expectations of our mutual commitment to the CSA model.
Becoming Part of Our Farm
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a relationship between our farm and you as our member. Rather than simply purchasing food, our customers become “members” of our CSA farm and receive a portion or “share” of the farm’s harvest. Our CSA runs for 24 weeks, from May to November.
Our Growing Practices
We farm in a way we feel is healthy for ourselves, our land, and our community. To increase the health of our soil, the farm is no till—that means we do not use tractors or other machinery to turn the soil. Tilling land releases carbon into the atmosphere, whereas farming without tillage sequesters carbon. This is mentioned to shed light on yet another damaging aspect of industrial agriculture, not to demonize small farmers who till. In fall of 2018, we decided to buy a tractor to relieve our bodies from having to do some of the hardest and most time-consuming physical labor. Before that, we accomplished all farmwork with our pick up truck, shovels, rakes, wheelbarrows, and other hand tools. Each spring we fertilize with composted plant materials and manures. We don’t use any synthetic chemicals and we are non-GMO. We do use a few OMRI-listed biological controls. OMRI-listed means they are approved for use by certified organic farms. Our farm is not certified organic and we do not plan to become certified. We are transparent about our farming practices and welcome any questions! This is abundantly productive agriculture, and we are proud of the methods we use.
Produce We Expect for 2021
The chart below generally outlines some of the vegetables/herbs/fruits we hope to deliver and when you may see them in your share. This chart is based on our best estimate, but of course weather, pests, and other events will affect actual production. The first few share bags are often on the light side, as we harvest the very first leafy green crops of spring. As the season progresses, share bags become heavier as more vegetables are ready for harvest.
- May/June Arugula, Beets, Bok Choy, Cabbage, Carrots, Chinese Greens, Garlic Scapes, Green Onions, Hakurei Turnips, Kale, Leeks, Lettuce, Snap Peas, Radishes, Spinach, Swiss Chard, Turnips, Cilantro, Shiitake Mushrooms
- July Beets, Cabbage, Carrots, Chinese Greens, Cucumbers, Green Beans, Onions, Potatoes, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Zucchini, Basil
- August Watermelon, Eggplant, Tomatoes, Peppers, Beets, Carrots, Chinese Greens, Cucumbers, Green Beans, Onions, Potatoes, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Zucchini, Basil, Parsley
- September Winter Squash, Watermelon, Eggplant, Tomatoes, Peppers, Beets, Carrots, Chinese Greens, Cucumbers, Green Beans, Fennel, Onions, Potatoes, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Zucchini, Basil, Parsley
- October Arugula, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Chinese Greens, Collards, Fennel, Onions, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Radishes, Spinach, Swiss Chard, Turnips, Winter Squash, Shiitake Mushrooms, Cilantro, Parsley
By selling shares in advance of the growing season, a CSA reduces the burden of up-front costs for your local farmer. Your share fees provide us with money to purchase seed and supplies before the season starts, and ensures that our capital expenses are met up front so we don’t have to pass on the cost of financing. We appreciate your commitment to local, sustainable food sources and a living wage for its producers. We believe that healthy, local produce should not be out of financial reach. We offer a sliding scale to try and keep access to locally grown, chemical-free produce economically inclusive. We ask our members to actively participate by deciding what they can contribute to our farm based on their financial situation. This includes household income (combined household incomes for those who split a share), and also considerations like home ownership, student loan or medical debt, retirement accounts/inheritance/
Sharing in the Risk of Crop Failure
We promise to do our best to provide you with a bountiful share each week. The quantity/quality/variety of the produce may vary, despite our best efforts, due to extreme weather, insects, or other production factors. By joining our CSA, you are agreeing to share the risk of crop variability with us and our other members. In the unlikely event of an under-performing crop, our procedure is as follows:
- If the harvest is light, the shares will go out with a minimum number of items. In this case, we will compensate with larger shares as more crops come in later in the season.
- If we can’t meet our minimum item number for reasons within our control, then we will buy in produce from another local, organic farmer to compensate.
- If we cannot meet the minimum number of share items for reasons beyond our control, we ask that you understand this is part of the risk of a CSA.
Sharing in the Reward of Crop Surplus
Our farm is a CSA farm, which means that all of our production is planned for the CSA. When crops are especially abundant, we pack as much as possible into your share. However, we don’t want to overwhelm our members or deliver so much produce that it goes to waste. If we feel that members have received enough of certain crops, we will handle the surplus by setting out seconds in bulk on a first come, first serve basis. Beyond that veggie surplus goes to wholesale buyers, food pantries, or others in need. This season, we might grow a few crops specifically for wholesale buyers.
Picking Up Shares
You are responsible for picking up your share each week during the designated time. The pick up location at the farm is in our pole barn. You may select your pick up day when you sign up at the start of the season:
- Fridays OR Tuesdays 3-7pm at the farm (901 Frost Hollow Road, Easton)
Notes regarding pick up:
- Read the chalkboard before getting your share. If there are special instructions or information, we’ll put it there.
- Be respectful of the designated pick up times. We don’t want to inconvenience you! We might not always be finished setting up before the start time, and we might have finished cleaning up by ten minutes past the end time. If you know you need to be early or late on a given pickup day, contact us the day before and we’ll try our best to accommodate you.
- Bring your own reusable bags to fill with produce. This is a great way for us all to reduce plastic waste.
- Return tomato cartons if they are clean enough that you wouldn’t mind getting your produce in them.
- Market Style When you are picking up at our farm, you will enjoy the benefit of selection with our market style pick up. Members take the allotted amount of each item set out and items are rotated to maximize variety and choice. Pick up at both our farm has a “Leave an Item, Take an Item” box. Members are welcome to leave an item that they know they won’t use rather than take it home to rot in the far, cold regions of the fridge. Conversely, if another member sees that item and knows that she could definitely use it, she is invited to take it–without being required to leave one of her items. This is not a “Trade” box–it is a box of goodwill/karma.
- Missed Pick Up If there is a week you cannot come pick-up your share, please arrange for someone else to pick it up for you during the regular pick-up time. You are responsible for explaining the pick-up location and procedures to your substitute. If you entirely miss a pick-up, but contact us the same day, we will hold your share in the farm’s walk-in cooler overnight for a scheduled pick-up the next day (preferably morning).
- Vacation Policy Each member may switch their pick up day once during the season to accommodate vacation. For instance, a member who comes on Fridays can decide once during the season to pick up the Tuesday either prior to or following their missed Friday. Likewise, a member who comes on Tuesdays can decide once during the season to pick up the Friday either prior to or following their missed Tuesday. Please give us adequate lead time by emailing a request to switch pick up one week in advance.
Washing Our Produce
The produce often comes out of the field with a lot of soil on it. In this case we use the washing station to plunge and dry greens and spray down root vegetables to get them mostly clean, but we do not triple wash. Some produce can be eaten straight from the share bag while some will need additional cleaning if desired.
Communicating with Us
Questions? The best way to communicate with us is via email. Our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. We will do our best to respond as soon as possible, but please keep in mind that we spend most of our time in the field growing your food and not at our desk.
Newsletter We will also communicate with you by email. When you sign up, you will be added to our distribution list. Please check your spam folder for our newsletter and direct it to your inbox. Before the season starts we send one newsletter per month. Once the season begins, we send one newsletter each week. Please, PLEASE read your newsletters from us!! During the season these brief messages will give information about the produce in your weekly shares, recipe ideas, and other farm related news.