FAQ

Questions About Our CSA

What is a CSA?
What is the pricing?
What are the payment options?
How do I learn more about my farm?
It’s my first time picking up my CSA box! What do I do?
Are there CSA breaks during the year?
Do you offer customized boxes?
How do I order items in bulk?
Can I switch box sizes?
Can I switch pickup sites?
Can I place deliveries on hold while I’m on vacation?
What if I can’t make it on time to my pickup site?
Why should I recommend Terra Firma to others?
How do I provide feedback about box contents?
Does Terra Firma Farm use pesticides?

What is a CSA?
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) was a model originally conceived in the idea that neighbors buy a “share” of the farm at the beginning of the season, covering the cost of seed, irrigation parts, compost, packing supplies, and the myriad of things that the farmer needs to get the season going, and taking on some of the risk that the farmer carries in planting, tending and harvesting crops. In exchange, the “share-owners” receive fresh, seasonal produce from the farm on a regular basis. It is based on mutual respect between the customers and the farmers. Our current CSA model assumes this structure, but has evolved to give the subscriber more freedom in when and how much they pay at a time for their subscription.

What is the pricing?
We offer three box sizes for you to choose from, depending on your household size and frequency of produce use.

Small $18 | Medium $29 | Large $38

Bonuses are offered to encourage a longer commitment to our farm:
$300 or more for a 3% bonus ($309)
$850 or more for a 5% bonus ($892)
$1400 or more for a 7% bonus ($1498)

What are the payment options?
We use Farmigo, a CSA Management Software Program, to manage the financial interactions between our customers and farm.  Terra Firma subscribers can manage their CSA accounts online, and pay through Farmigo using Paypal (credit card) or E-Checks (ACH).

You have the option of starting with a trial subscription of two boxes, your choice of size. After this, you can choose automatic (recurring) or manual payments, and a payment increment that works for you. If you choose automatic payments, your account will be charged a specified amount that you select anytime the balance falls below $40.

If you choose manual payment, you will receive an email when your account balance falls below $50, and another if a hold has to be placed on your account because the balance does not cover that week’s box.

How do I learn more about my farm?
Terra Firma publishes a weekly newsletter that subscribers receive via email. A searchable database of newsletters is also available online. The newsletter will include any important changes in delivery schedule, prices, policies, etc. Plus, it includes recipes that incorporate that week’s CSA contents!

If you join, please add csa@terrafirmafarm.com to your address book to protect our communications from spam filters.

It’s my first time picking up my CSA box! What do I do?
Your Farmigo account has details for your pickup location. First log in to your account, and then click on the tab labeled “Pick-up directions”. The address, pick-up times and contact information of the site host (if they chose to share it) will be displayed.

Once you arrive at your site, take the box with your name on it, and check off your name on the list located on the yellow clipboard. The check-off sheet is our way of communicating to you whether a box was delivered for you, and what size, as well as tracking who has picked up and who has not. If a friend or someone new is picking up your box for you, please tell them to take the box with your name on it. We want to make sure everyone gets their box of veggies!

Leave your boxes in a neat pile; we will re-use them. Please unfold them carefully according to instructions on the bottom. Do not leave the papers or other trash at your local friendly pickup site.

Are there CSA breaks during the year?
We take a two-week break over the winter holidays every year. A large percentage of subscribers take vacations during the same two weeks. Plus, we like to offer our crews a vacation from the rigorous schedule that growing and harvesting food demands. You will not be charged for a box during our holiday break.

The CSA delivery schedule may be affected by the Fourth of July holiday as well, depending on which day of the week it falls. CSA members will be notified of all schedule changes in advance.

Do you offer customized boxes?
We do not offer customized boxes. However, we offer three box sizes that reflect the needs of different household sizes and types. The weekly box contents are decided by Pablito, who makes his own meals from the box each week, and has provided CSA subscribers with very well planned box contents for years. According to our long time subscribers, this accounts for our long term success as organic farmers.

We also have a CSA store where members can buy seasonal items in bulk, in addition to their regular box.

How do I order items in bulk?
We have an online Farm Store that you can access in your Farmigo account. Simply click on “Store” to peruse the options! Any items ordered in the farm store will arrive in a separate box from your regular CSA box, and will be labeled with your name and the item. Produce in the farm store is available based on seasonality and abundance in the field.

Can I switch box sizes?
You can always switch your box size. Households change, appetites change. You can manage this on your own by logging into your account and selecting “Change” next to “Subscription” on the right hand side of the screen. You can also add on boxes if you’d like extra one week, or to get one for a friend. Just be sure to remove them from your account after that week’s delivery. You can also email us to help you: csa@terrafirmafarm.com

Can I switch pickup sites?
Yes. To switch sites, just sign in to your online account, and select “Change” next to “Pickup Site” on the right hand side of your screen. You can also email the CSA Coordinator to change your site for you: csa@terrafirmafarm.com

Can I place deliveries on hold while I’m on vacation?
Yes. Please provide at least seven days notice before a vacation hold. You can also set your vacation if you log into your account and select “Delivery Hold”. Be sure to set the vacation hold with a couple of days before and after the delivery days that you’d like your box on hold.

What if I can’t make it on time to my pickup site?
We do not guarantee that you will receive your box if you do not pick up during the designated hours. Our hosts have permission to donate boxes to neighbors, friends, family, or a charitable organization if they are not picked up in time.

We do not recommend late pick-ups, because often the quality of the produce is diminished if it sits out too long. However, you are welcome to arrange a late pickup with your host ahead of time.

In general, please observe the pick-up times carefully and be respectful to your site host. Doors may be locked or hosts gone to bed during other times.

Why should I recommend Terra Firma to others?
The produce speaks for itself. We hope that your enthusiasm for tasty food, like ours, will motivate you to recommend us to your friends and neighbors. We value our subscribers’ loyalty and would like to reward them for spreading the word; most of our CSA business has grown as a result of word-of-mouth. If you refer someone to our program, ask them to mention your name on signup, and we will give you an $18 referral credit.

How do I provide feedback about box contents?
We encourage subscribers to give us feedback about box quality and contents by emailing us at csa@terrafirmafarm.com. Please include the name on your account so that we can respond accordingly.

If you believe you deserve a credit for poor quality, damaged, or otherwise unsaleable produce, please email us. We will evaluate cases individually. Be sure to include what day/time you picked up the produce, how it was stored, and pictures if possible. We want to share the best quality produce possible, so your feedback helps us improve our systems and catch issues early on.

Does Terra Firma Farm use pesticides?
1) Terra Firma follows the National Organic Standards law as enforced by the National Organic Program. We are certified organic by CCOF, which only allows us to use pesticides and fertilizers approved by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI). For a full list of materials allowed, go to: https://www.omri.org/omri-lists

2) There currently exist a very small number of organically approved pesticides. Very few are “toxic” in the true sense of the word. Smothering agents, usually natural oils or soaps are one class. Sulfur and copper-based fungicides are used to treat foliar and fruit diseases. Biological materials use bacteria or fungi to target specific pests or diseases. Bt, the naturally occurring caterpillar toxin, is the most common of these but new ones are being discovered and marketed every year. Biological materials biodegrade rapidly in the farm environment and thus present little or no risk to anything other than the target pest.

3) Synthetic materials are prohibited for use, but just because a chemical is naturally-occurring doesn’t mean it is allowed in organic farming. Several effective, non-synthetic pesticides are highly toxic to birds, fish, or wildlife and have been banned or restricted by the NOP. These include rotenone, an insecticide, and copper sulfate, a fungicide.

4) We practice Integrated Pest Management (IPM) on our farm, meaning we only use pesticides when the threat of economic damage to our crops exists. That said, we have used, and continue to use, the majority of the pesticides listed by OMRI whenever necessary.

5) We advise our CSA subscribers any time we feel that their boxes contains an item that may have pesticide residue on it. In particular, the presence of natural sulfur dust on grapes may cause an allergic reaction in some people, generally limited to sneezing and stuffy nose.

6) Organic farming is about much more than simply “not using pesticides”. Terra Firma in particular follows an array of ecological farming practices that help minimize the impact of food production on the environment.

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