Sunday, January 3, 2010

Announcing Summer 2010 CSA

We are proud to announce Ben’s Produce Summer 2010 CSA! We are excited to be in business and look forward to a great season. Our CSA runs from early April through late September for 25 weeks.
Our online store is still operating and will do so until the end of March.
COMMUNITY SUPPORTED AGRICULTURE (CSA): What is CSA? CSA is a mutually beneficial relationship between a farm and you. By making a pre-season investment in our farm, you become an annual "shareholder" who shares the risks & rewards of the growing season. Your investment allows us to afford the annual start up costs, pay ourselves fair wages and to share the risks inherent in growing food. You will receive weekly returns on your investment in fresh, healthy, local vegetables and fruits at very competitive prices, resulting in saving 10% or more on the cost of produce. You will know that your produce dollars stay in the local economy and supports local agriculture. Sharing the risk is very important because nature always provides challenges in growing food. We begin to reduce our risk by growing a diverse set of crops over a long growing season and depending on low-cost technologies and methods and then bring our risk to an acceptably low level with your investment. It is possible that we may lose a crop but the loss is offset by the bounty of the other crops not subject to the same pressures and stress factors. Sharing the bounty is just as important as sharing the risk. The food you will receive is not only the return on your investment with us but supports local farming which is the base upon which culture and society are built. Healthier farms translate into healthier culture, society and environment. Did we mention reducing your carbon footprint yet? Food is a primary connection to each other and the earth. We want to feed you and your family the best food we can grow. It tastes good, it's good for you, good for us, good for the local economy, good for the future of agriculture and good for the environment.
SHARE OPTIONS: We offer a standard Full Share for $600 which averages $26 per week and is a suitable amount of produce for 3-6 people. We also offer a standard Half Share for $400 which averages about $17 per week and is a suitable amount of produce for 2-4 people. The weekly content of these standard shares will be determined by Ben’s Produce.
SHARE PICK UP: The location of the weekly produce pick up site has yet to be determined. However, the pick up location will be located in either the Mordecai/Oakwood or 5 Points neighborhoods of Raleigh. Pick ups will occur on Tuesday evenings between 4pm and 7pm.
SHARE CONTENTS: The available produce will change as the season progresses. Full Shares will contain about 8 to 12 items each week and Half Shares will contain about 5 to 8 items each week. Please see the attached Produce Availability Calendar for when produce will be available.
The table below provides an example of typical share contents in the spring:
Full Share
Half Share
2 heads Lettuce
1 bunch Spinach
1 head Bok Choy
2 bunch Radish
1 bunch Turnips
1 bunch Carrots
1 bunch Green Onions
1 head Cabbage
1 head Lettuce
1 bunch Spinach
1 head Bok Choy
1 bunch Radish
1 bunch Turnips
1 bunch Carrots

FLEXIBILITY: Each shareholder will receive 23 weeks of produce over the 25 week CSA period. This scheme allows you the flexibility to miss 2 pick ups without penalty. At any point you may send friends or family to pick up produce in your place. If you do so, please let us know ahead of time so we can accommodate you and your friends. We will donate unclaimed produce to Interfaith Food Shuttle of Raleigh.
Some families find it convenient to split shares with other families. We also like to share food and enjoy such arrangements. If you choose to split a share, please let us know at the beginning of the season so we may avoid confusion.
COMMUNICATION: We will communicate with you via email and our blog on a weekly basis. Our emails will include important but brief updates, a link to our blog and any notifications of postponed pick-ups. Our blog will function as our CSA newsletter and will include farm news, lists of upcoming produce, reflections, recipes, etc.
FEEDBACK: Your satisfaction is very important to us and our business. Please give us your feedback, suggestions and concerns via email or in person. We will do our best to respond in a timely manner.
REFUNDS: We will make no refunds after shares are paid in full. Shareholders are welcome to sell or give away their shares to others. We can provide assistance in transferring shares to others.
OUR PRACTICES: Ben's Produce follows USDA National Organic Program guidelines but is un-certified for various reasons. Please ask us about our agricultural philosophies and practices as we love to talk about them. We are confident the noticeable quality of our produce as well as our direct relationship with customers and shareholders speaks to our commitment to healthy food and agricultural practices.
PAYMENTS: We have a limited number of shares available this year and shares will be given on a first come, first serve basis. By sending us your information and a deposit, you may secure a share. We will let you know when your share has been secured. You may pay for your shares in full or you may utilize our extended payment plan. Please send the amounts listed below 30 days and 60 days after the date of your deposit.
Due Date
Full Share $600
Half Share $400
30 days
60 days
Click to find our 2010 Summer CSA Brochure and our CSA Sign Up Form. Please enclose a copy of either with your information and your payment. We look forward to getting to know you, entering this cooperative partnership and providing the best vegetables in the Triangle. We wouldn’t be able to do this without you and your support!


  1. This is such a wonderful way to support local ag! And we will especially appreciate the extra local grown produce donated to feed the hungry right here in the Triangle. :)

    Best of luck with the Summer 2010 CSA!

  2. Can we still buy in to a CSA? Half share?

  3. Hi Brenda - I think Ben already got back with you on this, but just in case not, the answer is YES! :) You can just print out the form on this page, fill it out and mail it our way (or else drop by at the Western Wake Farmer's Market Saturday). You can also call Ben at 919-800-8898.

  4. I am interested in getting a half share? Is the pricing still the same? Also, have I missed out of some of the season (I know you mentioned there are about 23 weeks of food...I didn't know if I joined now if there would be less)?

    Thanks so much!

  5. Hi. Is this the person I spoke with at the Western Wake Farmer's Market about this on Saturday? If so (or actually, even if not), please e-mail me at OR call Ben at 919-800-8898 sometime tomorrow to speak with us about this more fully :). Thanks.