Volume 8, Week 39, May 17-22, 2015
Well, we gratefully dodged a bullet last week. While we need rain—and mostly snow—we don’t need it on our ripe nectarines. Pretty much anything with sugar doesn’t hold up so well when it gets wet, so an organic fresh fruit farmer can count on losing any crop 3 to 5 days from harvest if it rains because our organic fungicide arsenal is limited to probiotics, good for your digestive immune system, not as great at stopping decay.
It’s why you don’t find much of an organic stone fruit industry in the famous southeast Georgia/Carolina peach country. They struggle a lot organically in France as well with the humidity and rain from the Mediterranean for this same reason.
Anyhow, the weather map showed heavy rain all around us, Fresno—20 miles away—got an inch of rain plus a half hour of hail, south, east and west of us the same. We were standing in the sunshine surrounded by a 360 degree wall of black, but in our little part of the world, barely a sprinkle. Did I mention we are grateful? Of course, had it rained on us, we would have been grateful for the rain and all the varieties we still had to harvest.
***A few housekeeping items***
When we started this, we never thought of add-ons. Our thinking was they would add more complexity and confusion than they were worth for all of us. But as we’ve gone along, we’ve added basic things like butter and eggs, nuts and grains, raw milk and cheese, seasonal fruits, and for the last several years we’ve offered a pretty nice array of produce as well.
We try to post things a few weeks out but it has become quite evident that the further out we go, the worse our accuracy becomes. Frankly, I can’t tell you what fruit I’ll be picking 3 weeks out, but I can get pretty close one week out, and our farmers agree that 1 week is an attainable goal. We’re working with fresh produce and weather and a farm just isn’t a widget factory.
So here’s the deal. If your produce arrives Monday to Wednesday, you can expect an email Monday afternoon telling you of the fresh produce items, and any seasonal kitchen items available. You’ll have till Thursday morning of course to order them if you like.
Likewise, if you are a weekender, you’ll get a descriptive email Thursday afternoon giving you till Monday morning.
Perhaps this isn’t quite as convenient, but it’s not good having stuff you’ve ordered canceled either. I think once everyone gets into the rhythm, this dog oughta hunt. It certainly reflects farm reality.
We’re working hard to make this work. Of course, the best deal will always be your box of fresh organic produce. It’s Christmas every week, and meals never get boring.
The kitchen’s getting pretty busy now with all the gluten free offerings. We found a more economical source for many of the organic gluten free flours, so if they haven’t changed already, you should see significantly better pricing directly for handmade kitchen items. The ladies are even down there making handmade, gluten free red pepper corn tortillas. And let me tell ya, these are made the way their mama taught ’em how!