Thursday, February 16, 2017

2017 Season, Details and Early Bird Pricing

Yes, it's that time of year again time to sign up for Farm & Fork Society and this year is a special one!

2017 marks our 10th Anniversary! 

First, I would like to welcome our two new team members. Jennifer Duckworth will be our Volunteer Coordinator/Site Supervisor and Susan Norkin will be a Site Supervisor. Both Jen and Susan are stewards of healthy living and I am lucky to have them join the team!

We have some changes this year so please read through everything. Full Share details can be found on our website in the "Shares Offered" section.

  • Season Dates: June 7 to November 15.
  • Pick up Day/Time: Wednesdays, 12-3 PM
  • Early Bird Pricing: Early bird pricing is available for Vegetable, Fruit, Eggs, and Pasta shares. March 1 deadline is firm. No exceptions.
  • Credit Cards: We are accepting Credit Cards. Details on order form.
  • Vegetable Share: This share is now available in two sizes: Basic and Premium. Premium is the same quantity as past season. Basic is smaller. Full details are on the website.
  • Chicken Share: This share will NOT start until August 2. Knoll Krest Farm is in the process of converting the chicken farm to 100% organic! The farmer is not sure when the change will be complete, but it definitely be done by August. If it is completed before August, members will have to opportunity to start the share earlier. 
  • Weekly Add Ons: We will be sending weekly emails in which you can order weekly add ons including products from Bobolink Dairy & Bakehouse, Breezy Hill Orchard, homemade products from Farm & Fork Society and other local food purveyors. 
  • Donations for Food Pantry Shares: We are once again asking for donations towards the purchase of shares for our local food pantries. In addition, to Our Lady of Sorrows and Interfaith Food Pantry, year we have added Isaiah House to the list of recipients. 
How does it work?
Starting on June 7th, Farm & Fork Society members will pick up their shares on Wednesdays at the Wells Fargo Parking lot located at the corner of Essex Street and Spring Street in downtown Millburn (Behind Bhakti Barn Yoga). Pick up times are from 12 PM to 3 PM.

All members are expected to volunteer 1 or 2 short shifts per season to assist in the distribution of weekly shares. A volunteer sign-up sheet will be coming your way before the season begins.

Each member is required to pay a $25 membership fee to help cover the costs of running the Farm & Fork Society and any supplies that are needed.

How to Become a Member
Click HERE to go to the "How to Join" section where you can find detailed instructions and a link to our online ordering system. All members must agree to our Rules & Regulations which can be read here. Please review prior to mailing your contract and check. Membership commitment form and payment is needed no later than May 1. (Membership commitment is not considered enacted until order form and payment have been received. A confirmation email will be sent to you once membership is complete.)

By joining the Farm & Fork Society you reap the rewards of being a member of a community supported agriculture group. Please recognize that there is no guarantee of the exact amount of produce to be received each week. The farm cannot offer refunds, should you be unable to continue through the season. The farms strive to provide us with the highest quality products at a reduced rate from market price throughout the season in exchange for your advanced commitment to the farms. By submitting your contract you are also agreeing to the rules and regulations of the Farm & Fork Society.

As a member of the 10th season, you will be joining hundreds of families from Millburn-Short Hills, Maplewood-South Orange, Summit, Livingston, and the surrounding area in a vibrant community that supports the sustainable farming activities of local farmers.

We look forward to seeing our long standing members again 10th season as well as welcoming all new Farm & Fork Society members. Our goal is to continue to build a wonderful community within and around our farmer partners while providing healthy and seasonal food to you and your family!

All the best,

Melissa Goldberg

Friday, February 3, 2017

Now More than Ever it is Important to Support our Farmers

I always believed in the power of food and when I started the Farm & Fork Society 10 years ago, my goal was to gain access to the best organic sustainable produce available for my family and the community.  Over the last decade, I delved deeper into the industrial food system, the health impacts of food, and the overall impact that food has on society. Modern life has made it increasingly important for groups like Farm & Fork Society to exist.
In a recent commentary in Civil Eats by Mark Bittman, Michael Pollan, Olivier de Schutter and Richard Salvador, the authors eloquently discuss the interconnectedness of agriculture, immigration, labor, income inequality, equal rights, wages, woman’s issues, education, climate change, health diets, and industrial food. “It’s all connected; the common threads are justice, fairness, and respect... a “sustainable food system” cannot exist inside an unsustainable political and economic system.”  I recommend reading the entire article to understand the full breath of the piece.
As I start to assemble the paperwork for our 10th season, I look back to see how far we have come to grow this amazing group. Hundreds of members of our community have joined together to support our local farmers so they can pursue the types of farming practices that are sustainable and in line with our values. Farming is a hard business, and I am proud to enable us to support partners who work to ensure that we all get quality, delicious produce at affordable prices. Unfortunately, this is increasingly more difficult, and we suspect with the changes going on at the national level, life will only get harder for our farmer/partners. 
Some key challenges for our famers face include:
  • Climate Change is affecting perennial fruit bearing trees that require a minimum number of cold days for proper fruit production.
  • Plants are flowering earlier, but the frost dates are still the same, resulting loss of fruit product. 
  • Longer hotter summers that are predicted by climate models have shown to increase pests and disease. 
  • Drought affects all our farmers. In 2016, New Jersey faced the worse drought in 14 years.
  • Bees are dying at an unprecedented rate—up to 30 percent per year—and are in serious and immediate risk from human-caused climate change. Fruit trees require bees for cross pollination in order to bear fruit.
  • Each summer our farmers hire migrant laborers (legally) to work fields because Americans do not want to work on the farm. With new conflicts with Mexico and other immigration initiatives, our farmers likely will have trouble finding workers.  
  • Food is big business. The industrial food system is one of the largest contributing factors to climate change via methane releasing livestock, contaminating water from feed lots, the use of pesticides, and monoculture farms. The lack of appropriate national leadership has and will continue to create polices that effect food (e.g, GMOs, food labeling, organics), agriculture, natural resources, rural development, and nutrition. 
Now more than ever they need our support. Being a member of Farm & Fork Society is vital to our farmers and our community. Your membership ensures that our local, organic farmers make enough money to continue to practice the agricultural stewardship that we all want. Without your membership, your dollars, and your support these small local farmers will most likely go out of business.
I recognize that each weekly share provides you with a tremendous amount of food. Farm & Fork Society makes sure that any leftovers never go to waste. It all gets donated to two local food banks, Our Lady of Sorrows Food Pantry in Maplewood and Interfaith Food Pantry of the Oranges. There will be an option for those who cannot join this year to donate funds to purchase shares for the food banks. More than one million people in New Jersey are food insecure, with Essex County having the highest rate in the state, almost 20%. Any donation not only help our farmers, but also those families in need in our community.
The 2017 pricing will be available in the coming weeks. I look forward to building our vibrant community around food and let us “march” with our forks. As Michael Pollen says, “The wonderful thing about food is you get three votes a day. Everyone of them has the potential to change the world."
Thank you to everyone who has participated in our food community in the past and who continue to support us into the future. 
Please spread the word. 

I look forward to growing our food community.
Eat well,

Melissa Goldberg
Farm & Fork Society

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Vote for Farm & Fork Society as your favorite CSA/Food Coop in Millburn Short Hills Magazine!

Please vote for Farm & Fork Society your favorite Food Coop/CSA in Millburn-Short Hills Magazine -- Reader's Choice Awards.  

The last question in the survey you can write us in!

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