FARM NEWSLETTER // WEEK 13
Updated: Sep 16, 2021
UPDATED: We tested negative for Covid, twice. We had direct extended exposure so we didn't want to chance anything. We definitely still had something, whatever our kids brought home, but the symptoms are synonymous with Covid so we took the extra precaution. This week was cancelled, but we will resume as normally scheduled for Week 14!
Good evening All,
I have some not-so-great news for you this week so I'll cut right to the chase. Two of our employees have tested positive for Covid-19. As you know this is a trend we are seeing state wide right now.
There is a definite rise in cases throughout and now we’re seeing it at home too...
We consider ourselves highly exposed because we work shoulder to shoulder with everyone here on the farm. We had two unrelated employees test positive. Ben and I have been really tired, but we’ve also been working 7 days a week for over 3 months so that’s to be expected. We have had some other symptoms too, and will be getting test tomorrow morning at the community site closest to us.
As you know, we’ve always taken Covid-19 protocols very seriously. Last year I even published a worksheet with guidelines and the “what-ifs”. Earlier this season you heard me talk about what would happen if we were to get it. You may remember that I mentioned our program being impossible to navigate without Ben & I- which is true. We are the only decision makers here at the farm; what goes into the Shares, what quantities, what quality guidelines, etc. we are happy to be an “owned and operated by” type of business, but with that provides some challenges too:
We will have to cancel this week’s CSA Shares.
This week, from Monday Sept 13th through Friday Sept 17th, we will not be harvesting/handling, packing or delivering any produce whatsoever.
Please understand that this decision did not come lightly. In the best interest of everyone around us, we have decided that it would be best to cancel this week’s CSAs considering our verified exposure.
We take this seriously. Our kids are home from school (poor Kelsi only got 1 day in kindergarten before this). Our farm stand was cancelled for the first time ever, it’s been 8 YEARS. And like I said, we’re cancelling our CSAs this week. One thing we're certain of is that we're sick, we still need to get tested to see if it's Covid or not.
Is the produce we got last week safe?
When I made the announcement on our Facebook page I got a really great question. “Is the produce we got last week safe to eat?”
The short answer is Yes. The longer answer- we’ve been receiving guidance from the FDA the entire length of this pandemic. Last season we were given info that’s actually been proven again and again: Covid-19 does not travel on fresh produce.
Thank you to Dan for asking this question. You know the expression, if one person has a question there are always more people with that same question. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to clarify that!
Deadlines coming up
THE DEADLINE FOR OUR ADD-ON SHARES WAS SUPPOSED TO BE TODAY.
Since I didn’t post this newsletter on Friday and am now posting it on Sunday (two days later), it would only make sense to push the deadline back by a couple of extra days to sign up for the add-on shares! Since this is the last time we’ll offer the Add-On Shares before the end of the season, I want to give you the full lowdown on these. We will be delivering the Apple Shares next week starting Monday Sept 20th. The Fall Shares will be delivered week 15 & 16, starting Monday Sept 27th & October 4th.
The Apple Shares are a 5/9th bushel box (Family Share sized box) full of Honey Crisp Apples straight from the orchard. The Apple Share is $50 and weighs appx 25 pounds. You’ll get a printout from me about how best to store the apples and ideas for how to use them 😊
The Fall Share will come to you in two separate bushel boxes full of fall crops. The first week will be about a half bushel squash, 10# russets and 10# carrots. The second week will be about a half bushel of squash, 10# red potatoes, 10# dried onions, and 7# beets. This is tentative and could vary slightly. There is also a Fall Share Guide that explains the types of squash, what's different between them, how to store the different varieties you're getting in your Fall Share, etc.
To sign up for the Add-On Shares please visit the website on the "Become a Member" tab, linked below. Once you're on that page you can add the products you want to your cart and checkout online like that. If you'd rather get an online invoice from me shoot me a message. It's not too late to sign up for the Add-on Shares! The last day to order Add-On Shares will be Tuesday Sept 14th.
**For those who ordered the honey shares- we were supposed to be sending out the Honey this week with your CSA. We will instead be pushing this delivery back and will add the honey to your CSA the following week starting Sept 20th.
Things still happening here on the farm
Most of our employees will be out this week on a mandatory quarantine. For those who aren’t, or who have tested negative, there will be opportunities to work throughout the week (the expression rings true that there is always work to do on the farm). Ben & I will be working too as we're able. I do have to admit though, it's been a struggle to stay awake today.
Please accept our sincere apologies for cancelling this week of CSA Shares. I hope I can stress how difficult it is for us to cancel our weekly harvesting. It feels wrong to not be working but Ben & I know that we're all on the same page and this is in the best interest of everyone. We are sick; we just need to get tested to see if it's Covid or not.
I know that many of you joined our farm because of the produce we offer, seasonal selection, and recipes & ideas for how to use your produce. For a lot of you I would also guess that a motivating factor to joining the CSA was to connect with a family farm who raises goods close to home; to support specialized, generally high risk, small scale farming.
As many of you know, a CSA is a partnership between Farmers and Customers. It stands for "Consumer Supported Agriculture". This season we've mostly been able to insulate our CSA Members from weather related loss or decrease of harvest; and we're grateful to be able to lean on our CSA Members to help insulate us from the financial loss of cancelling a week of CSAs. Thank you for your continued support through this.
I look forward to posting an update later this week- I'm just as anxious as you are. I feel like we need to flash forward through this week so we have the answers I need to provide you with. It makes me anxious knowing there is so much on the line.
I'll be sending the exact same information again tomorrow morning so that those of you who don't usually read the blog post emails will actually get it. So don't mind if you get this information again tomorrow; it'll come through as a basic email (not like the one I usually send the newsletter in with the different links).
We will be following protocols from the CDC for getting back to work. I'll post that later this week after we have our test and know more.
Thank you again for your understanding. Stay well Friends,
~The Farmer's Wife