By Thomas Nelson, president and co-founder of Capay Valley Farm Shop
For over a decade, farmers in the Capay Valley have participated in a community dialogue that grows out of a love of place and people. We have worked from the premise that one way to keep this region agriculturally vital is to get as close to our customers as possible. Capay Valley Farm Shop grew out of these conversations as a tangible way to connect our urban neighbors directly with the source of their food.
Our service, FarmShares, builds on many of our farmers’ hands-on experience with Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). They know how powerful this model is at forging direct ties between growers and eaters. Since beginning our multi-farmCSA in 2008 we have committed to transparency and sharing the bounty of the season’s harvest. We have sought to develop a service that makes it convenient for our customers to access a diversity of foods grown by more than 30 small, family farms. By delivering to workplaces and neighborhoods we have created an efficient delivery system—how great to go to work or run weekly errands and come home with fresh, local food.
From the get go, we have heard how Capay Valley FarmShares brings joy and excitement to our customers’ lives every week. The products often speak for themselves and the story of the farms and people who work with passion to grow food and steward a rural region nurtures hope and connection. In a few short years we have grown to serve an amazing network of businesses, hospitals, schools and local shops with fresh food from Capay Valley.
Through the simple act of eating locally grown food, we believe a significant chain of relationships develops. People’s health improves. Farmers earn a fair price for their labor and livelihood. Our economy keeps more dollars circulating locally. We establish a sustainable ecological foodprint . And as eaters and farmers forge direct relationship, there’s an interaction that improves the quality of life for all involved. That’s why I love FarmShares.
Today, we invite you to tell your friends and family about FarmShares. By making just one referral in November you will be eligible to win a set of beautiful greeting cards featuring the farm photography of Susan Cohen Burne. There are a total of 5 prizes available. The grand prize—a Hambakahle Farm heritage turkey for the winter holidays—will go to the person who makes the most referrals by the end of the month. Help grow our community by recommending FarmShares to your friends and co-workers. While you’re at it, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter @Capay FarmShop and let us know why you love your FarmShare!