Steve’s Weekly Update for 5/7

Hello members,

Through this weekly blog entry I will share what I can of the details and the rationale behind them of the food that you receive each week.  Amy Hetager, our outreach and marketing coordinator for the CSA will also add information using the blog, including recipes and gardening tips, and networking/learning opportunities. Amy is also leading our Eldorado Farmer’s Market distribution and will be the contact for Eldorado members.  Pattie Ravenheart, our CSA and membership manager, will be your contact person in Santa Fe for all issues around the practical details of your share.  We will also use the blog whenever we can to answer your questions, so that the information is available to all members, so keep your questions and comments coming!

We also encourage you to take a few minutes when you have a chance to peruse the archives and the various informational headings on the blog.  This is our “private news channel”, and the stories that have accumulated over the season thus far may be of interest to you as well.

Our goal for this year is to scale up the CSA membership to a size where we have sufficient buying power to strongly support several core farms for which our commitment will provide a stable and reliable economic basis for their operation.  In turn our commitment to them should result in a more diverse and year round availability of local and regional foods for you our members.  This scale also allows us to support our outstanding management team, and to operate at a higher level of customer/member service as a result. 

We appreciate your recommendation of the CSA to your friends and co-workers.  We are excited to broaden our community of citizen eaters, backyard and community gardeners, and anyone and everyone who is doing what they can to re-localize out food system and support our local economy and their own and family’s health in the process.

We are committed to support Mesa Top Farm (the original Beneficial Farm, on Rowe Mesa near Santa Fe), Harmony Farm (in Abiquiu) and Shiroz Vineyard (in La Luz New Mexico just north of Alamogordo).  In addition food will come from as many as two dozen other farms from throughout New Mexico, and also Colorado.  We will be sharing information about the other contributing farms as we are able, through the blog and also links to relevant internet sites.

For now, as the quantity and variety of local vegetables slowly increases, we will be providing smaller than average shares.  Our seasonal share average is typically around $24 per week, but at this early stage, with less to choose from, we will deliver about ¾ of the average, or about $18 per week.  We do not want to provide too much of only a few items as you will likely tire of them quickly if we do.  By giving smaller shares now, we are “banking” your share dollars so that we can provide larger shares when the variety and availability increases.  We found last year that this approach was very rewarding, as it allowed us to provide excellent shares of local fruit in season, without overly reusing the amount of vegetables in the weekly share.

So for now you will see mostly fresh salad greens, for most of May.  Spinach, arugula, and chard are from Harmony Farm.  In the next week or two, salad greens and oriental greens from Mesa Top Farm will begin.  Early roots crops like radishes and turnips will also start.

Sadly, local fruit will be scarce for the next month or more.  We are expecting an availability of out of region organic strawberries from Sandpiper Farm in California, via our fellow CSA Los Poblanos Organics in Albuquerque.  We surveyed members of the CSA as the winter season and nearly all agreed that fresh organic fruit, reasonably priced, was worth including regularly in the share even if we have to go “out of region” from time to time, in order to get it.  We will conduct this survey again with you, our summer share members, and move forward accordingly.

Meanwhile enjoy this week’s mix of fresh (and storage) local veggies.

Thank you for your support,

Steve Warshawer

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