It’s December now, and it’s supposed to be winter! This is the time to curl up with a cozy computer and crunch numbers; somehow it’s harder to chain myself to the computer when it’s 50 degrees and sunny, and especially when there is a puppy in the house!
Nonetheless, the first round of number crunching is done, and the results are in: The value of the share this year was a stunning $793.84, even before factoring in the Pick-Your-Own crops! That is based on the amount of produce that left the share barn times our farmer’s market prices (which are based on grocery store prices) divided by the number of shares. If you had above-average attendance or if you took full advantage of the Pick-Your-Own crops, this fantastic value would be even better. We gave out 6420 pounds of tomatoes, 3078 heads of lettuce, and 5200 pounds of salad greens this season. With this first round of number crunching done, we are ready to announce our changes for the 2016 season.
What will change for the 2016 regular share?
I think that many of you will be happy to hear that the answer to this question is “Not much!” By far the majority of our survey respondents said that they like the share just fine the way it is. So our basic share format will stay the same. The price will increase to $600, which is comparable to most of our neighboring CSA farms and which still amounts to a 24% discount over the retail value of the 2015 share even before factoring in the value of the PYO garden. You can lock in the $525 share price if you sign up and pay a deposit before December 31st. We are eliminating the large share as an option. It is not possible to calculate exactly how much produce the large share members get, but even estimating something less than double the value of the regular share, we just can’t afford to give away something like $1200-1400 of produce for $800. If you use a large share’s worth of produce, you can purchase 2 regular shares.
The other thing that will change is that we will be building a new farm stand. Once this is open, you will be able to come in to the farm stand any day of the week, and pick out a share-bag’s worth of produce from a subset of the produce in the stand. We will be supplementing our offerings with produce from other farms, so you don’t need to worry about our running out on a given day; in fact, we hope to have a more consistent variety all the time. The wheels seem to be turning slowly on this project, so we aren’t able to promise when the stand will open, but we are currently hoping it will coincide with the start of the share season at the beginning of June.
What’s new for 2016
We are offering 2 new ways to get a share in 2016.
1) The Flexible 10-week pass. This allows you to purchase 10 share pickups for $285. You can come in any time and fill up your bag, ten times during the season. If you use up your 10 pickups, you can just get another pass; this option will start in June 2016 , but will extend into the winter next year.
2) The Pick-Your-Own pass for $200. This will allow people to get access to the PYO garden who don’t want to commit to a whole share. The PYO garden will include the same crops as in the past: strawberries, cherry tomatoes, beans, herbs, flowers, etc. This could be a great option for those who have their own garden but want to supplement or those who don’t eat a whole share’s worth of produce but really like to come and pick.
3) The PYO pass and the 10-week pass together are available for a discounted price of $400.