Frequently asked questions
Where can I check details and reviews of the farm?
Check out Local Harvest to find details and reviews.
What makes Windy River's CSA program special?
Three main things: customer choice instead of boxed shares for everyone, a small operation with very high standard for both the state of the produce and the organic products used to grow, and most importantly really special varieties of produce with tons of diversity, grown for taste.
What if there is an emergency and we can’t pick up?
Keep in contact with me by text and we will work something out. Farm pickup is totally fine Wednesday morning. After that I will hold your share until Wednesday evening if you ask before then. For Maple Grove pickup you may have a workmate or friend pickup if you have an emergency. If you will be later than the pickup window, text me and I will leave your share near the pickup site for you to grab. The important part is to communicate and we can work things out. Per the contract, if you miss and do not contact me twice, you will no longer receive shares.
What about planned vacations?
Let me know as soon as you are able when you will be gone. I will write it on a calendar. Since there is an extra week in the season this year each member can miss one week and still get all the shares they paid for. Advance notice is a must.
Do I have a choice of what items are in my shares?
Absolutely! Our CSA features almost 100% member choice of the items available for the week. A text is sent the evening before to tell members what the choices will be and how many items they can choose. A white board will be at the start of the tables. Check off your name and follow instructions about your choices. It is usually 4-5 items off each table. In Maple Grove, I will be there to explain to those members what they can have and I will also write it on a white board. In Big Lake, I will be around; you may need to text.
When can I pick up my share?
For farm pickup no shares should be picked up before 3:00 on Tuesday. You may come at 3:00 without getting a text first. At some point in the late afternoon you may get a text with share info additional to the one the night before. For Maple Grove shares you will have your one to two hour window.
Is the produce washed?
Per the contract you should consider all produce as unwashed. Although I never use chemical fertilizers or pesticides, the produce still needs to be washed. Information on this is in the Produce Primer sheet. Also it would be great if members touched the items on the tables as little as possible to keep clean for the next member.
How do I know how big the shares are?
There is a pinned post on the Facebook page. You can choose this size per week or every other week. For single members there is a smaller every other week size.
Should I bring my own bags?
It's optional. A stack of fresh plastic bags will be available to you. Some members like to bring reusable grocery bags or a cooler when they pick up.
Why is a Windy River CSA more expensive than some farms?
We are obsessed with season extension and having local foods available as many weeks of the year as possible, so our CSA season is 4-6 weeks longer than most MN farms. The shares come to around $30 in cost per share, but the value is much higher than $30 spent at the farmers market. Plus you only take what you want to eat, so there is less waste.
You will need a salad spinner. They are cheap. Put the greens in and add water. Drain, and then spin. I store the salad in the salad spinner. This keeps it above the draining moisture.
Read and keep the Produce Primer sheet. Use the most perishable produce first. All produce from the CSA will last longer than the grocery store produce, in general, EXCEPT berries.
Follow our produce recipe Pinterest page. Search for additional ideas.
Use the produce available per month chart (last page of the 2019 share information page) to learn about seasonality. Many recipes have produce from more than one season and need altering.
We have the goal of a U Pick herb garden for members but right now it’s still contains sand burrs; but feel free to request herbs you may want as part of your share.
Keep in mind that you can order floral arrangements throughout the season even if you don’t have a flower share. There will also be U Pick flower buckets available.
Thanks for your support and we look forward to growing for you this year!