This week was an interesting one in the life of the first-year CSA we joined back in January. Our farmers issued what amounted to a state-of-the-farm address in last week’s newsletter regarding some of the rumblings about the amount of produce they’d been providing to shareholders. At our house, we’d already had the discussion about how little we were actually receiving, and Week 4 was a low point, so I was glad they addressed the product at that time. They explained how the incredibly dry spring had taken its toll and that they had been dividing up absolutely everything they were producing, not selling anything at the market, and not even saving anything for themselves.
Before any formal statement was issued, we had already decided that anyone expecting 30-lb. boxes of produce in May was out of their mind and that things would pick up in the coming weeks. The family at the drop-off point where we pick up our share had asked us what we thought of the current situation, and we explained that we joined a CSA to support local small farms for better or for worse and were not depending on our share as our only food source. Besides, the only things that are ready to harvest in May are turnips, lettuce, green onions, snow peas, etc. Lighter fare, and crops we were getting plenty of. The drop-off family said that “people” had been comparing boxes and generally discussing their displeasure with the harvest. We feared the worst, and sure enough this week we had someone from our pick-up point drop out.
Our pick-up point was already existing on shaky ground, being the most distant from the farm and also the point with the least number of shareholders picking up. Our farmers contacted us, regrettably stating that they would no longer be able to maintain our pick-up point due to the drop-out and that the options were to choose another pick-up point or to accept a refund. We discussed this offer and once again affirmed our decision to not quit the CSA for any reason. We actually had the chance to voice this stance to our farmers the next day in person at the local farmers market, to which they gratefully responded with some free wild spinach.
As predicted, this week’s box was the fullest of the season.
- 1lb 8.3oz potatoes
- 4oz baby carrots
- small bunch of radishes
- big bunch of rosemary
- 3oz red spring onions
- 2 heads (4.2oz) lettuce
- 1lb 6.2oz cabbage
- 1lb 6.8oz yellow squash
- 12oz wild spinach (lamb’s quarters)