And the new Rettland Farm Share roll out!
That's right, Farmees. It's that time of year when we open up our Farm Share for enrollment. The Farm Share is our version of a CSA, only with more flexibility and options built in for our members!
Here's how it works:
The Buy In Phase:
Like any CSA, we have to start with the buy in, the price you pay for membership in the farm share.
Unlike most CSAs, however, you decide the price you pay for this one.
That's right, there is no set CSA fee for the Farm Share. You pay what you can based on your budget and food needs.
What we offer you in return for your commitment to the farm for the year is a little "thank you" in the form of a bonus on top of your investment.
- For amounts up to $499, we will add 3% to the amount of your investment.
- For amounts of $500 and up we will add 8% to the amount of your investment.
- And for amounts over $1000, we'll simultaneously be impressed and humbled by your dedication to Rettland Farm, we'll give you the 8% bonus, and we'll throw in a Rettland Farm “Taste Freedom” T-Shirt!
You can make your investment anytime between now and May 1, 2016. However, we’ve added an early pay bonus this year as well:
- Pay for your Farm Share before March 1, 2016 and receive an ADDITIONAL 3% bonus.
- Pay for your Farm Share before April 1, 2016 and receive an ADDITIONAL 2% bonus.
Just remember that the Buy-In phase closes May 1, 2015, and Farm Shares will not be available after that date.
When we have received your fees, we will issue you a Share Card. We’re actually leaping into the 21st Century this year, and the Share Cards will be plastic! (No more savings books, which, though quaint, were a little cumbersome, we’ll be the first to admit.)
The amount on the Share Card will be equal to your dollar investment plus all of your applicable bonuses, whatever they may be. At that point all you need to do is to wait for May 2.
Because beginning May 2, we begin the Share phase.
The Share Phase:
After May 2, and until your Share Card balance reaches $0, you are entitled to begin collecting your Farm Share, in the form of ANY of the products that we produce and have available for sale at that time. No set quantities. No fixed items. No mandatory pick up schedule.
- Pastured Broiler Chickens: Pasture raised, antibiotic free, GMO free, whole chickens and occasionally parts and pieces.
- Heritage Pork: Pasture/Free Range raised, heritage breed, antibiotic free, GMO free. We carry a wide variety of retail cuts, sold frozen in cryovac packaging. Some cuts include pork chops, boneless loins, roasts, sausages, bacon, cured boneless hams, fresh leg steaks, spareribs, baby back ribs….plus cured, bone in “holiday hams” for the holidays by Special Order
- Eggs: From pastured hens, antibiotic free, GMO free.
- We’re also making arrangements to bring in other staple items like beef and lamb from other farmers. These products will always be clearly marked with the name of the folks that produce it—we’re going to carry them because they are awesome products that we eat ourselves, and also to broaden your selection when you visit the Larder.
- And anything else that we can grow ourselves or source from other fantastic local growers.
In short, you can take ANY Rettland Farm product that we have available throughout the season, in ANY quantity that you'd like to have it in. The idea here is to make your Farm Share more customized to your needs and tastes, and not try to cram everyone into the same mold.
The Point(s) of Sale:
The main point of sale, where you will be able to collect your Farm Share will be the Larder at Rettland Farm, at 2776 Baltimore Pike, Gettysburg, PA. At a minimum, The Larder will be open Saturdays, and we are considering Friday evening hours as well. And access to The Larder is always available by appointment.
**For our Members in Baltimore—We finally have the beginnings of a Buyer’s Club program for you! We have been graciously offered a drop point at Waterfront Kitchen in Fells Point once per month. We are also looking for potential drop locations in North Baltimore, and we’ll let you know as soon as we find them. Let me know if you would like more info!
At the point of sale, you will simply select the products that you'd like to buy just like you would do at any farmers' market, and then present them to our Team member at the point of sale along with your Share Card. The retail price of your purchases will be added up, and the total will be deducted from your remaining balance on the Share Card.
You'll repeat this process until your balance reaches $0, at which point you are still welcome to shop with us. You'll just use other forms of payment besides your Share Card.
In addition to the cash bonus on the Share Card, you'll also receive a few extra perks for being part of the Farm Share.
- To give you the best selection of our available products each week, Share members will get first dibs on our inventory, no matter what. Members will be allowed early access to the Larder each day it is open. So if the Larder's posted hours have it opening at 12 noon for the general public, it will be open at 10 am for Share members.
- Share members will also receive early bird tips about special products that we have available in limited quantities, such as holiday hams or Thanksgiving turkeys, before we announce their availability to the general public. You will also get first crack at our Farm Dinners held throughout the year.
- Finally, we'll give each member one insulated reuseable tote bage that you can use to safely carry your goodies home from your visits to the Larder.
The Fine Print:
Please understand that while we're trying maximize your freedom of choice, we're still a relatively small farm, and sometimes our inventories of certain products are low. It's important to know that this is still a CSA of sorts, and by no means a mega supermarket with seemingly endless supplies of everything.
There will be days that we don't have what you want. But we will always have something awesome for you to eat. CSAs are meant to challenge your thinking when it comes to food, and make you step outside your comfort zone when it comes to cooking. So if we don't have bacon on the shelf when you visit, rest assured that we'll have it next week or the week after, and these pork minute steaks will be amazing on your plate until then.
Plan to take 6-8 months to exhaust your share. That is certainly the intention, to allow you to experience as much of the farm's seasonality as possible. If you try to collect your full share in the blink of an eye early in the season, you're going to miss out on some great stuff later in the season.
How to Join:
Simply send me an email. firstname.lastname@example.org and put “Farm Share” in the subject line. Let me know that you're interested and the approximate dollar amount you'd like to invest. We'll take it from there.
Thanks to you all for your continued support. Here’s to a great Farm Share 2016!