March 23, 2020

What a Week!

We are so fortunate to be part of such a robust local food system. As the news of society’s reaction to COVID-19 spread, we all wondered what, if anything, was going to change. It was my wife, Moyra, who delivered the news. While we sat around the kitchen table after dinner, she logged on to customize our weekly Farm Fresh To You box (yes, we get one too), “Thad, everything is sold out, even the radicchio.” We looked at each other. “Radicchio is sold out?” Radicchio is great, but it never ever, ever, sells out and I knew we had a field full of that stuff. It has been an around-the-clock process from that moment to catch up to the unprecedented demand.

We greatly value all our customers, from longtime supporters to those new to the service who may now be required to shelter in place, seniors and other vulnerable populations, and many who are trying to increase their social distancing and limit visits to retail stores. Although we have been, and will continue to welcome new customers, larger orders by existing customers are significantly impacting our operational systems. As an essential business, we welcome this challenge and will continue working our hardest to bring fresh, local foods to customers. We are not concerned about a shortage of supply, but the issue is the logistics of getting said supply from our fields and our partners to our packing warehouse, which is something that takes at least a day, often two. That said, I took it as a unique challenge to get customers their radicchio—we were going to figure this out.

As the dust settles (it’s not all settled yet), we made some big adjustments to better meet the needs of our customers. Last week, you likely noticed your delivery did not arrive at the normal time; we really apologize, but we made the decision to make sure as much of it showed up as possible by the end of the week. This week, we adjusted routes to ease the daily load on our drivers, and moved to daytime delivery for safety and visibility. These steps, along with some process improvements in our warehouse, should make things better.

As you read this, truckloads of products are headed to our warehouses. Produce, eggs, grains, juices, meats, dry goods—all inbound. Historically, our inventory was completely set on Thursday when the following week’s boxes were ready to customize, but this week we will update the availability on the website as product reaches the warehouse. Items will show as “sold out” until new supply lands, so please check back in your account before your customization window closes (11 a.m., two days before your next delivery) if there is an item you are still looking for.

I have been proud of our team and network of farms and producers. In one week, we greatly increased our supply and the size of our vegetable plantings, and we still made the plant date of our first tomatoes (that all happened last week.) This situation is giving ort local food system an opportunity to really shine and I hope you all realize that is is working as hard as it possibly can for you.

Enjoy your farm box and don't forget to wash your hands.

March 16, 2020

COVID-19 Update

Update: Monday, March 16th, 6pm
Before we dive in with an update, we want to extend a heartfelt thank you to our community of customers and family of employees. The positive support and kind patience we are seeing online and in correspondence has been tremendous.

Here are a few answers to questions we are seeing online:

Are you still able to deliver?
  • Yes, at this point we do not see a need to change our delivery schedule.
  • For areas advised to shelter-in-place, we are planning for deliveries as usual per the guidance set for grocery and essential supply services. Should an issue arise, customers will be notified by email.
  • If you are expecting a business delivery, and your office is closed or unable to receive a delivery during your usual delivery window, please use your account online to skip deliveries as needed.
Do you have enough supply?
  • Our teams are working closely with our farm, partner farms, vendors and producers to keep fresh, organic produce and essential grocery items stocked.
  • Please note that during this time, substitutions of comparable products may be made, as there could be a need to source perishable products from different producers. As always, if there is an issue with an item in your delivery, please email us at contactus@farmfreshtoyou.com and we’ll be happy to make it right.
What precautions are being taken for COVID-19?
  • Please continue reading below regarding measures we are taking to ensure the safety of our family of employees and customers.
  • For a limited time, please contact us via email at contactus@farmfreshtoyou.com for non-urgent matters. By reducing the number of phone calls, more of our employees can work from home, allowing us to increase our social distancing.
  • We will continue to update our blog and social media as new information becomes available.

Update: Monday, March 9th, 10am,br
Our highest priority is, and always has been, to utilize industry-leading food safety practices for the well-being of our customers, our family of employees and the loved ones we care for each day.

With the growing concern over the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we wanted to update you on our existing and ongoing food-safety protocols.

Food Safety
In conjunction with guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we follow strict, third-party inspected and verified, Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs).

Given the importance of these practices at this time, we are increasing the frequency at which we train, inspect and verify that these standards are being met and exceeded.
  • Special use of hand washing and facility foot baths is always required prior to entering the food and packing facilities at the beginning of shifts and after any breaks.
  • Additionally, employees are required to wear uniform food-safety smocks (professionally laundered after each shift) and hair nets. Face masks are available.
  • Employees wear gloves while handling produce and farm boxes.
  • As always, once folded shut after last item is packed, farm boxes are not reopened.
  • Increased verification of food safety practices within our facilities and by our family of growers.
  • Delivery boxes are not reused. Drivers will continue to pick up flattened farm boxes from customers who wish to leave them out for recycling.
  • We provide sick leave benefits and monitor to ensure employees who are ill do not come to work.
  • We ask our members to always wash their produce before eating as part of everyday good practices.


Facility and Delivery Vehicle Sanitation
Our systematic and proper sanitation and cleaning procedures, Standard Sanitation Operating Procedures (SSOP), is rigorously outlined and routinely followed in our company Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) plan. HACCP is a food safety monitoring system that is used to identify and control biological, chemical, and physical hazards within the storage, transportation, use, preparation, and sale of perishable goods. It also determines critical control points (CCP) in the process of food production.

Third-Party Certifications
As part of our regular farm and facility food-safety systems, we are routinely audited and inspected by multiple third-party groups to verify that our systems meet PrimusGFS standards.

Thank You!
Thank you for trusting our family farm with your food deliveries. We are proud of our food safety program and of the commitment of our employees to these policies.

The food you share at your table is the same food we share with our families. We get deliveries just like you do, and we relate to the reassurance of knowing where our food comes from and how it is handled.

We wish everyone good health and wellness. Eat nutritious fruits and vegetables, take care to be well-rested and to protect those around you.

March 8, 2020

Female Founders: A Maker's Spotlight


Everyday women around the world are doing something sensational. Because March is Women’s History Month, all month long we will be celebrating the inspirational women we partner with because of their dedication to their craft and the kind of hard work the makes dreams come true!

First and foremost, we recognize Kathleen Barsotti, our mother, and co-founder of our farm Capay Organic, and founder of Farm Fresh To You for following her dream of connecting people to the source of their food.

Kathy Watering the Greenhouse

Farm Fresh To You

In 1976, Kathleen and her husband, Martin, moved to Capay and began building their family farm and home on 20 acres of land. In 1982, after working part time at the UC Davis Plant Pathology Department, she devoted her full attention to the farm, then known as Capay Fruits and Vegetables.

In 1992, Kathleen continued on her own as sole proprietor and manager of the farm. Later that same year, her dream of connecting people to the source of their food was realized through the creation of her organic produce delivery service, Farm Fresh To You.

In June of 2000, Kathleen wrote her last farm news and the following month ended her courageous battle with breast cancer. Having always worked alongside their mother, Kathleen proudly entrusted her sons, Noah, Thaddeus and Freeman to continue her founding legacy and mission. Kathleen is beloved by all who knew her as a devoted student to ecological sciences, an excellent farmer and loving mother of four sons.


Greenlee's Bakery


The Gelder’s are a family of strong women raising strong women. For generations, they’ve been growing the Greenlee’s family-owned and women-led business, specializing in baking artisan breads, handmade pastries and more. Their time-honored signature recipe for cinnamon bread has set a reputable footprint in the industry of scratch bakeries.

The family works with local suppliers to source the freshest and most authentic ingredients and uses their handmade artisan technique to ensure the highest quality. Their goal is to make you and your taste buds happy!


La Vie Rustic


Georgeanne Brennan, founder and owner of La Vie Rustic, had the privilege of living in rural Provence and learning not only the ways of growing a potager, making cheese, and gathering wild herbs, but the pleasures of doing so. Today, she continues to live, as much as possible, the way she learned to in Provence, living with the rhythm of the seasons in a sustainable way, cooking from her garden, gathering herbs, making jams and preserves, and in general, enjoying the small pleasures of each day.

Many of the La Vie Rustic products are produced right on her small farm with the help of a small staff. Whenever possible, they have used local artisans to create the products, from the letterpress-printed seed packets to the handcrafted sickles.

Brennan loves bringing the things she loves to anyone who wishes to practice a sustainable lifestyle producing and caring for their own food, even if only a small part of it. Her hope is that you find motivation in living and supporting a sustainable lifestyle too.



Lovesticks


Lynda Najarian left her home in San Francisco for a weekend in Mendocino back in September of 1993. There, she discovered her exciting and prosperous future on the rise in the form of a totally unique, whole-wheat baguette that sent her taste buds reeling. Judy, the baker that made this unique bread, and Lynda formed a partnership and called the breads Judy’s Breadsticks of Mendocino.

They began looking for a bakery in Marin County to service the Bay Area. Soon after, Judy’s Breadsticks spread like wildfire throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. Customers appreciate Judy’s handmade, wonderful, unique, rich flavored 100% natural breadsticks and "twigs". Bread is the constant. It’s an integral part of the meal, of the human experience, of sharing, of communion. Lynda says, “Judy’s Breadsticks are a natural reflection of love and warmth.”




Just Jan's

After a twenty-year career in the film industry, Jan Hogrewe was ready for her second act. As a life-long food lover, and cookbook aficionado, Jan didn't have to search very long to discover her new career.

Jan’s kids were tired of eating figs, and she was tired of seeing them go to waste. Determined to find a way to use them all, she started making jam. From those humble beginnings Just Jan's was founded. Today she now offers a full line of gourmet fruit spreads and foods, made without artificial ingredients or preservatives.

In creating her spreads, Jan has been guided by her love of food and ingredients, refusing to compromise on quality or flavor. The result is a line of spreads and curds that are all natural, preservative free, and are lower in sugar than traditional jams and jellies.


Know Your Farmer

Cru Chocolate

After pursuing a degree in Engineering and an advanced degree in Sustainability, Karla McNeil-Rueda studied Cacao technology and fine chocolate confectionery at the Chocolate Institute of Latin America and the Caribbean in La Habana, Cuba.

She learned to integrate and combine her empirical and cultural knowledge of chocolate with her experience as an engineer. With her Partner Eddie Houston, also an engineer, together they founded Cru Chocolate, a hand crafted bean to bar company that sources fine Cacao from Mesoamerica and the Caribbean to use in their chocolate and other Cacao based creations.

Cru Chocolate’s mission includes a focus on assisting women at origin in creating and growing their own business by providing education and facilitating small scale equipment.



eos Chocolates


Catherine von Ruden’s creative journey began with the realization that she could contribute to overall healthy diets by making treats using less sugar. For all who want to enjoy sweetness on a daily basis, she offers products that are healthier and rich in flavor.

Having grown up in Switzerland with a love for all things natural, and also with a passion for creating desserts and treats, she turned to her roots and started working with chocolate as well as almonds grown on the family’s farm in California.

Named for Eos, the goddess of dawn, eos chocolates are meant to satisfy chocolate lovers bite-by-bite, guiltless pleasure guaranteed.


Bee’s Wrap

Bee’s Wrap was founded by Sarah Kaeck, a mother of three who has been, by turns, an avid gardener, milker of goats, keeper of chickens, and seamstress. Bee’s Wrap started with a question facing many families and home cooks: How could we eliminate plastics in our kitchen in favor of a healthier, more sustainable way to store our food?

What she discovered is a lost tradition made new again. By infusing organic cotton with beeswax, organic jojoba oil, and tree resin, she created a washable, reusable, durable, and compostable alternative to plastic wrap for sustainable food storage.

Bee's Wrap is committed to creating a meaningful difference for a healthy bee population, cleaner waterways, and education in sustainable practices to protect our earth.


LKLY Designs

Lisa Young is a fiber artist and is the founder of LKLY Designs. She produces intricately woven, hand-made baskets from natural, sustainable jute and hemp fibers.

Her fascination with basket weaving began at a young age when visiting a family friend where she noticed a row of miniature pine needle coiled baskets on display. She knew how to coil a basket by the next day! She has been honing her craft for nearly 40 years and has been teaching art and crafts to children and adults for over twenty five years, with a focus on basket making for the past seven.

Today, Lisa's aesthetics in her basketry are informed and influenced by her studies in non-western modern art, folk culture and traditions, her travels, and upbringing in domestic arts (crochet, sewing, loom weaving).

How To Support Women-Owned Businesses by Adding Their Products to Your Delivery:
CSA members - head on over to our online Farm Stand Market to customize your upcoming delivery. Market is open from noon on Thursday until 10 pm, 2 days before your scheduled delivery day. After you confirm your produce items, click the orange button "Confirm and Continue To Other Farm Products" to add the products to your delivery.

Not part of our farm family? Find out if we deliver to your neighborhood. You can even get your whole office in on the fun with our office snack packs. Find more information about our office deliveries here.