Welcome To Harvest Week 23, Third Week of Extended Season: Nov 12-16, 2013

Welcome to Harvest Week 23, Third Week of Extended Season

In Farm News this Week, Farmer John Shares Replies to his Food Safety Facebook Post

Please return your CSA vegetable boxes and mesh bags to your site.

Enjoy a 7% Discount if You Sign Up for 2014 before the 2013 Season Ends

We think the best time to sign up for the next season is while our current season is still fresh in your thoughts and in your meals. If you sign up now, it helps us considerably in our planning for next season.

Early Season, 2013, r to l: Garlic, Cauliflower, and Onions. We hope you'll enjoy Early Season, 2014, with us

Early Season, 2013, r to l: Garlic, Cauliflower, and Onions. We hope you’ll enjoy Early Season, 2014, with us

Sign Up by Saturday, Nov 23
If you haven’t already joined us for 2014, sign up by Saturday, Nov 23, the last day of our 2013 deliveries, for a 7% discount.  You can easily sign up at Member Assembler, our convenient CSA management system

Use coupon code NOV7 for your 7% discount on all vegetable share types.

 After the season ends, we will no longer be offering this generous discount.
Please mail your payment to: Angelic Organics, 1547 Rockton Road, Caledonia, IL 61011
You can also pay by credit card for an additional fee at the Local Harvest site http://www.localharvest.org/csa/M111 . (We prefer if you pay by check, but we offer this additional convenient payment method so you can secure your 2014 share now.) No coupon code needed if paying using localharvest.org.
Reminder: receiving the early discount requires both signing up and paying by the deadline. Please sign up only if you plan to pay by the deadline.
If you have questions, call Shelly weekday mornings at 815-389-2746 or email her at email hidden; JavaScript is required

The Crew

Rush R, Honorary Member of the Angelic Organics Crew, leaps through life

Rush R, Honorary Member of the Angelic Organics Crew, leaps through life

The Weather This Past Week
Winding down. Half as many boxes to pack compared to the full season. No weeding, transplanting, fencing, thinning to do. Just a little bit of harvesting to do. Mostly grading, bagging, and packing.
 
The Crops
Our kale tops are still out in the fields. They are supposed to hold up (and sweeten up) until temperatures drop to the mid-teens. We’ll see if that’s so.Kale Tops
 
Angelic Organics Food Safety Post hits a Nerve
I posted this photo and caption to Facebook recently. (You might remember it from a recent communication to shareholders.) It generated the most responses  ever for an Angelic Organics Facebook post. To see all the related posts and shares, visit www.facebook.com/angelicorganics
Double washing our orange beets. The Food Safety Modernization Act will require triple washing, plus recording even more than the following: washed by whom, harvested from which field by whom, which bed, what day, stored where at what temperature, washing apparatus cleaned how by whom with water tested by whom and when? Oh, and what temperature water? Notice the employee's face is not shown...this way, the government will not know whether she was wearing a hair net. Read more about the act from Local Harvest Director Erin Barnett: http://www.localharvest.org/newsletter/20131025/

Double washing our orange beets. The Food Safety Modernization Act will require triple washing, plus recording even more than the following: washed by whom, harvested from which field by whom, which bed, what day, stored where at what temperature, washing apparatus cleaned how by whom with water tested by whom and when? Oh, and what temperature water? Notice the employee’s face is not shown…this way, the government will not know whether she was wearing a hair net. Read more about the act from Local Harvest Director Erin Barnett:
http://www.localharvest.org/newsletter/20131025/

Replies:

Katherine – The veggies I get from you are already double washed??? I would never have known. Lol! (But I actually enjoy getting veggies with soil left over, it makes my heart happy.)

Lauren – Doesn’t washing make produce spoil more quickly? I don’t mind dirt on mine. I’m more concerned about the germs from the gloves themselves.

Kristin – Ridiculous. Sounds like another way to micro-manage what doesn’t need to be. According to the newsletter, the FDA itself predicts it will put small farmers out of business. I wish they’d just come out and say that that is their plan, because it’s not like we can’t read between the lines. Stay strong, organic farmers – as a 5th generation farmer and a former grocery store employee, I have seen both sides, and YOU are who I will support to the last!!

James – WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS? Can you tell me that the box that the beets are in are organic? What about the PLASTIC BAG that the Organic beets came in? was this plastic, organic? There is soooooo much being missed, that it dosent matter who packed the beets

Angelic Organics – You are on the right track, James. Also, if you really scrutinize the organic guidelines, you can’t help but think that once the food is no longer in the possession of the certified organic farmer, once it gets into the possession of the non-certified organic consumer, it might no longer be organic. For instance, the farmer can’t mingle organic with non-organic, because the organic is then considered non-organic. But if the consumer has organic and non-organic together in their refrigerator, hmmmmm….

James – I work at whole foods market in Chicago, and I love organic produce. But it just amazes me the things ive seen over the years there. I know that you, the farmers are who ALL of us need to be behind! Sorry if i sounded rude earlier , did not mean it! I would love to work for u someday! Seriously

David – The tracking data John refers to is extremely helpful to the CDC in tracing produce back to the source of food borne illness outbreaks that kill over 5,000 people annually in the United States. While the regulations may seem onerous, the extra precautions from multiple washings at prescribed temperatures is intended to reduce instances of food borne illness in the grocery and restaurant supply chain. The collection of vital information that can be made available to the CDC and other agencies to identify the source of contaminated produce (like melons, tomatoes, asparagus, lettuce, etc.) during an outbreak of food borne illness is critical to stopping such events. The role of government is to balance public safety with the needs of businesses and as such is never easy.

Angelic Organics – Maybe the consumers then should keep logs of what they do with the food that comes into their homes…how soon they unpack it, what temperature they store it at, how thoroughly they wash it (I suppose this would have to be videoed); cooking temperature and time; how clean are their plates and silverware and stored where; how long were the pots and pans scrubbed and with what?

David – While FB is not the proper venue for a discussion of public policy, I want to make sure you understand I’m not a supporter of intrusive, “nanny type” government. Consumers should be educated and responsible for their own food preparation activities, although even home food safety practices can not protect people from contaiminated food. But to dismiss public health safety with sarcasm is not productive. If you believe farmers who sell directly to consumers are careful and ethical, then seek an exemption from the regulations for that category of agricultural producer. But when produce enters the mass wholesale supply chain from large industrial agriculture companies, the public deserves and should expect some level of government oversight.

Angelic Organics – I like that the rules make me more conscious of food safety. The question is, where does balance lie? Many of the rules make sense on their own, but put them all together, and there go many farms down the regulation drain.

Terry – What is the message you would recommend that we convey to our elected reps?

Angelic Organics – This is an enormous, vast set of regulations. I am daunted by it. (I don’t think the public every got to weigh in on all the farm chemicals that are being used today, btw.) Angelic Organics is planning to comply with the regulations, btw. We’re not rich enough to go up against this force of regulations.

Vicki – Isn’t dirt where the probiotics live?

Angelic Organics – ironic that so much is being realized today about the importance of exposure to soil/dirt, as a sort of inoculation process, and we have a government that seems to regard dirt as filth

Carla – I’m only joking, but it seems that in the future all food will have to be boiled before comsumption.

Carla – Crazy. Do you have to wash everything or only certain vegetables?

Angelic Organics – It depends on what crops we certify for Good Agricultural Practices, which is how we can prove that we are compliant with the Food Safety Modernization Act. To qualify will cost us about $30,000 to $40,000 in upfront costs (lots of infrastructure work to do, amongst other changes) and then probably an extra $30,000 to $40,000 per year to make sure we are in compliance.

Carla – Ouch.

George – And what do they make Monsanto do? Put some Money in a Lobbyists hand to Buy a Politician.

Roxanne – iT WOULD BE GREAT IF THEY PUT THE SAME RIGID GUIDELINES ON ALL OF OUR FOOD HERE IN THE USA. SEEMS A LITTLE OVERKILL HERE FOR ORGANICS THAT HAVE ALREADY BEEN GROWN AS HEALTHFULLY AS POSSIBLE!

Karen – Does the government not realize water is as precious as oil? And should encourage people to soak veggies in their sink for a few min with vinegar instead of using hundreds of gallons of water we need to drink??? What a waste

Natalie – I would be happy with a box of dirty vegetables.

Robert – Gee I wash all my veggies when I get them home and here’s something so did my mom she told me you never know who touched your food no matter where you are buying them from.

Jan – The whole agenda is skewed to take the good food away-The Ones want total control of our food and our lives! So SAD! and do not mean STANDARD AMERICAN DIET! sad for that too! SAD means I am SAD in my heart!

Megan – while that info is valuable…with recent outbreaks of spinach and chicken the consumers were not told any information.
For more replies on this topic, visit www.facebook.com/angelicorganics

Upcoming at the Angelic Organics Learning Center

Angelic Organics Learning Center

Tell Your Favorite Teacher to Bring Their Class to the Farm!

The farm-to-school movement is spreading throughout the nation. Teachers and professors of all levels seek out the Learning Center as a regional leader in farm-based education.

Our 186-acre living classroom exposes students to topics covered across the school year, including nutrient cycles, ecosystem dynamics, animal physiology, plant growth and life cycles, environmental topics, and more. Our expert team of educators leads groups in fun, educational, hands-on activities.

Groups have many choices, like the opportunity to harvest vegetables from the fields, milk the goats, collect eggs and prepare a farm fresh field-to-table meal.

We also offer custom programs to scout troops, homeschool groups, church groups, birthday parties, and more. For more information about our custom programs or to schedule your group, email email hidden; JavaScript is required or call 815.389.8455.

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Please like and follow the Angelic Organics Learning Center on Facebook. The Learning Center is a very important part of our community, helping to connect people to the earth, to their food and to one another.
 
Thank you for supporting local foods this year!

Box Contents

Please Note: this summary is written before you receive your box—please be aware that some guesswork is involved. As always, be sure to thoroughly wash all of your vegetables.

Salad Greens – Arugula

Fruiting Crops – Baby Blue Hubbard, Butternut or Buttercup Winter Squash

Root Crops – Carrots, 2 bags of Potatoes

Cooking Greens – Kale

Brassicas – Cabbage, Maybe Brussels Sprouts

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Showing 2 comments
  • Joan Siekierski
    Reply

    As I’m reading all the replies to the “food safety” rules, I have a few thoughts as a long-time shareholder at Angelic Organics. We became shareholders in 1994 because we wanted to support the CSA idea and we were trying to find organic produce closer to home. It felt like a very important step to help a struggling organic farm. There were veggies we didn’t really like back then and sometimes it was hard to figure out what to do with everything when our schedules were too crazy to get it all turned into meals for our young family. Still, we continued to get a share every year to help the farm grow. We’ve seen Angelic Organics go through many stages and have watched the farm grow to accommodate the many families it does now. Through all of this, we learned to trust the practices used to bring the amazing veggies to our table. The government can’t regulate everything that happens to a vegetable before it’s eaten by the consumer. What they are trying to do with these regulations is take away our freedom to choose who we want to grow our veggies. They know these regulations will put the small farmers out of business and in doing that will create more reasons for needing the regulations since we will all be completely removed from the entire process. As a shareholder of Angelic Organics, I can participate in workshops at the farm, volunteer with the farm team, walk the fields in the u-pick fields, visit the animals at the learning center, go to one of the 2 farm days each season and talk to the farmers that grow my food. The small farmer doesn’t need these regulations to thrive, they have community and people who trust what they do and can see everything for themselves if they doubt the practices being done. I’m not sure I would want to be a part of the “new” farm if all the regulations are in place. I like the dirt on my food. All food starts with dirt, why are we trying so hard to sterilize everything we eat? We can’t control every bug that lands on a vegetable before it’s picked or every animal that’s chewed off a leaf before it’s harvested. Will there have to be round the clock cameras in the fields so nothing is missed? We’ve stayed shareholders for all these years because we trust the natural process of growing food and want to support all the positives Angelic Organics has to offer not for sterilized vegetables!

    • angelicorganics
      Reply

      Thanks for your thoughtful post, Joan. We appreciate your concern and all your support over the years. Farmer John

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