Member message for Beneficial Farm, CSA for week of August 28th distribution
Member news: BAGS BAGS BAGS:
The CSA is buying bags because we need them every week and member bag returns have slowed. Please return the re-usable bags that you receive your share in.
New monthly account bonus begins for members: We are extremely appreciative of members response to the more robust marketplace. Several members have placed orders which, along with their shares, reached a total near $100. Looking over the offerings we realize that members can effectively (and we hope, affordably) depend on the CSA for a greater portion of their family food needs.
Retroactive to August 1st, we are offering 5% bonus for any 4 delivery period that a member purchases (including shares) exceeds $300. The way our software system works we have to rely on members to keep an eye on this, as our farm account software does not produce member purchase totals, it simply logs the history. On your word we will confirm the numbers and add $15 to your farm account.
Egg and Ground Beef Price increases: It is very, very hard for farmers to decide to raise prices. Generally throughout the food system, from smallest to largest, increased costs are pushed back to the primary producer who is afraid to pass them along for fear of losing customers. In the Big Food world often suppliers are simply dropped when they need to raise prices as there is always someone willing to cut a corner or take a chance to try to get new business
Mesa Top has held the same prices for ground beef and eggs for many (5+?) years while absorbing ongoing increases across the range of business activity. The final straw has been egg cartons, which we buy every 3 or 4 years and just reordered at 50% above last time. On the ground beef side Mesa Top has run out and has found that no other grass finished ground can be bought as low as we were selling ours.
Until Mesa Top can process more beef we will be supplying ground beef from the Grass-fed beef COOP that Steve helped form to supply La Montanita. This is a terrific product, all 100% grass raised and finished, and processed at the same facilities where Mesa Top beef is processed. We believe you will like it. It would be categorized as very lean, compared to Mesa Top’s extra lean. We think you will like it.
As of this week egg price and ground beef price will each raise $1. We understand that some members may not accept this rise, so we will cancel any ground beef or egg shares of members who do not want to be affected by the price rise. Please let us know!
Marketplace News: The marketplace is bustling with options!
News and specials on the marketplace:
Garlic starts this week and will be a staple on the marketplace throughout the fall:
Gemini farm is our main garlic supplier and we are adding their garlic to the marketplace and the shares. Hoping to pull that together this week, though there are some logistical issues still to address.
Basil is still out of stock for the season unless we find another farm with supply.
Ongoing seasonal specials:
Peaches: We are including Thomas Cameron’s plums in the share this week, so peach lovers, order from the marketplace!
Carrots: We will keep them on the marketplace all fall. The Northern NM carrots are terrific and will not include them in the share every week.
Corn: Schwebach Family Farm sweet corn continues: grab another half dozen using our marketplace special: buy 5 and get half a dozen. (Will not be in the share…)
Roasted Green Chili: Talon de Gato offers their fresh, lightly roasted chile. 1/2lb bags available on the marketplace. We welcome larger green chili orders, please let us know.
Cantaloupes: Preferred Produce’s bargain fruit continues. You will also receive on in your share this week.
Tomatoes: It sounds like Preferred Produce has caught back up with the tomatoes productions, and we will have both grape tomatoes and Vine tomatoes on the marketplace this week.
Still available on an ongoing basis:
Kale, collards, beets, lettuce mix, lettuce heads, cucumbers, zucchini, summer squash, onions
Check out the Webstore: http://www.farmigo.com/store/beneficialfarm
Here is what we are planning for your Beneficial CSA Share for Thursday August 28, 2014
New potatoes from Gemini Farm
Garlic from Gemini Farm
Romaine Lettuce from Talon de Gato
Young Leeks from Talon de Gato
Parsley bunch from Preferred produce
Cantaloupe from Preferred produce
Plums from Rancho Durazno
This week’s share continues to include produce from across the field, from tree top to below the ground. A bigger bunch of leeks from Talon de Gato, and new potatoes and garlic as Gemini Farm makes their first fall delivery to the CSA. (NOT FULLY CONFIRMED AS OF THIS WRITING).
The leeks can be prepared with the parsley:
Leeks with Maître d’Hotel (leeks and parsley butter)
Leeks trifolati -in the style of truffles- (olive oil, garlic and parsley)
Grab some carrots from the marketplace and make Rice Pilaf with Carrots and Parsley: It’s a very simple recipe that can make a great side, or you could add some sautéed chicken breast to it and create an Entrée.
Continuing with the share details, for sweet and tasty treats we again include cantaloupe from Preferred and plums from Rancho Durazno
For your salad we have tender head of romaine lettuce from Talon de Gato.
From the Mesa Top and other News:
Climatology 2014: NOAA LINK: http://www.weather.gov/forecastmaps
For 3 mornings in a row we have started the day at 40 degrees at Mesa Top. If anyone doubted the signals of fall last week, they are clear now. The last spell of stormy weather was a prototypical fall storm, with warm moist, air in advance of the actual storm, which was windy and cool, and followed by west/northwest winds and a bright blue sky. A similar storm is predicted for this week. The fall parade is begun.
From the Wild: Another sign of fall: tarantula walking across a rocky pasture area. The desert tarantula range includes the Santa Fe area. They become very active at beginning of fall as that is when they mate.
Cow stories: Mesa Top cows and Jim Miller Ayrshire project: Another of the first calf heifers is looking ready to calf. Fortunately this time we spotted her and brought her in to the corals and maternity ward area.
3 calves and mother cows are out on nearby pasture and the oldest, now about 3 weeks, is beginning to nibble at the grass. We are always impressed with how quickly the youngsters of our cows begin to eat and develop their rumen.
Meat and animal protein update: See details above about ground beef and egg price rises.
Cheese making update: See above, the fall resumption of milking is immanent.
Thank you for your investment in family and local and regional agriculture. We appreciate your support as we work to improve the CSA as a vital element of our local and regional food system!
Our farms and farmers thank you for your support,
The Warshawer/Swendson/Agard Family
Beneficial Farm CSA