CSA Frequently Asked Questions
Who are the farmer(s)?
Our farmer(s) are Victory Garden Initiative staff and interns. Our staff have significant experience in growing food and creating a healthy local option for food access and produce. Our lead agriculturist is our part-time staff member Ian Powell. He is out at the farm doing the majority of the day to day grind and experimenting with the land. Christine Kuhn, our Youth & Farm Programs Manager, is a full-time staff member who splits her time between delivering youth education programs, working on the farm alongside Ian, and working in the office to coordinate both youth & farm program logistics. In addition to Ian and Christine, we often employ part-time seasonal farm crew members, college interns, and youth Earn & Learn staff who are all interested in exploring urban agriculture.
What is the difference between sustainably grown and organic?
Our emphasis is to encourage the use of sustainable growing practices which encompasses more than requiring certification paperwork. Although our food is grown using organic practices, we have no intention on pursuing organic certification. The certification process can involve considerable cost and paperwork as well as create a barrier for effectively growing healthy food on a small scale. Our goal is to build the soil which sustains the farm and to minimize the amount of input from outside the farm, while creating a community focused green space in the heart of Harambee. As a non-profit, we are not focused on the bottom dollar but rather on the impact our local, nutritious food has on our community.
Can I order Ala-Cart from the farm without being a CSA subscriber?
We do not currently have this option available. However, during the 2019 season we are offering a Back to Basics box which may suit your needs better. This box will contain a smaller variety of traditional produce items (such as carrots, beans, tomatoes, cucumber etc).
How do I pick-up my share (box)?
Come to our pick-up site during the times listed to pick up your fresh produce. There will be a VGI staff person at the pick-up location to assist you. We will be using reusable boxes and bags in order to continue the sustainable and environmentally friendly practices. Each week you will return the box and bags from the previous week and pick up a new loaded box.
Can I stop delivery if I am out of town?
Yes. We will need a 3-days notice to stop a delivery of a CSA package so that we can coordinate our orders for the week. You may also have a friend or family member pick up your box, just be sure to contact us by the day before to give us this person’s name!
What if I forget or miss the pick-up time?
Our delivery times are based on what is convenient for our delivery site and staffing. It is our policy that any packages left after the posted hours can be used at the discretion of the site manager. In many cases, they are distributed to the workers at the site or donated to charity. If you miss your pickup, you may contact us and we can check to see whether your package is still available.
What is the difference in between a Traditional Share and a Back to Basics Box?
A Back to Basics Box will include only 3-4 staple or commonplace items (i.e. things you would readily find on any grocery store shelf) and is paid for on a week to week basis. Some examples of produce included would be carrots, green beans, tomatoes, salad mix, potatoes, green bell peppers, and beets. While you are only receiving a small variety of items, you are receiving more of each item. For example, a traditional box may only receive 1 bushel of carrots, you would receive 3. This box is intended for people who are interested in a CSA but not ready to make the commitment whether for financial reasons or are intimidated by the variety of produce in a traditional CSA! You can always change your subscription later on in the season for a pro-rated fee.
In contrast, our traditional half share contains a wide variety of seasonal produce grown on the farm and must be paid for up-front (unless paying with SNAP). Each box will contain 6-10 items. While many items are common place, we also include an assortment of unique and heirloom produce. Your box will contain all of the same items as a Back to Basics Box plus more adventurous items such as herb bundles, heirloom radishes, fava beans, kholrabi, leeks, fennel, Asian pears, hot peppers, etc.
**Please note that BOTH share options are eligible for SNAP payments, which are charged on a weekly basis!