Our City Farm

  (St. Louis, Missouri)
FRESH. LOCAL. NATURAL
[ Member listing ]

2013 CSA Shares Still Available

We still have a few opening in our 2013 CSA program. Subscriptions are for the entire 26 week CSA session and starts  Saturday May 4th, 2013. Our City Farm CSA is flexible and modular allowing for a customized basket that is perfect for all households. By having cafeteria-style CSA options, we allow members to customize the size and type of  basket for their lifestyle.

Shares can be purchased online at: Click Here To Signup

or email us at info@ourcityfarm.com

We are Certified Naturally Grown and only grow using organic methods. Our eggs and chicken are also soy-free and pasture-raised. We are GMO-Free and do not use synthetic fertilizers. We believe our customers should be able to trust that the food on their table is safe for their family in every way! We hope you'll sign up today, we can't wait to grow for you!


Share Costs

Whole Share Pastured Chicken - $405

Half Share Pastured Chicken - $210


Whole Share Farm-Fresh Eggs - $98

Half Share Farm- Fresh Eggs - $52

Double Share Farm-Fresh Eggs - $185


Whole Share Heirloom Produce - $780

Half Share Heirloom Produce - $400

Sampler Heirloom Share Produce - $225

 Please note: CSA shares are for local customers only. We will NOT ship shares.


Sign Up Open Now

 

 
 

How Many Miles Are on Your Chicken

I recently wrote a blog post on our website titled, "How Many Miles Are on Your Chicken?". I think it's important that everyone know why I wrote this. I have the unique perspective of being a fairly new farmer. I can remember the choices I made as a non-farming consumer and remember why I made them. Every day I learn more and more about food and farming and the more I learn, the more I want to share that knowledge with consumers. I not only want people to be able to make an informed decision but I want our customers to understand why we do what we do.

In "How Many Miles Are on Your Chicken?" I specifically talk about how much travel your "local" chicken experiences even before it gets in your hands. Some even before they get to the store. This may not affect the taste or quality, but it does beg the question, is the local choice, always the sustainable one? Also, how "local" is your food really?

We've taken very deliberate steps to source our chicks locally, produce them locally and distribute them locally. We feel this is better for the environment and the surrounding community. Our order to a local, small scale breeder keeps our money in the community. We process our chickens locally, which also means less stress on chickens and no carbon emissions in the form of travel. Our local farm is only 16 miles from the farthest delivery point.

Please take a few minutes to read the post and see how I've broken this down mathematically and see if you agree.

 
 

Grow Our City Farm

Well I feel like a duck on water. On the surface, things have been calm for our farm but in actuality, we've been going full steam ahead at break-neck pace. When our Kickstarter project failed to be funded, most people thought we would have to discontinue our plans. However, it was just an opportunity to think about our project another way. 

We began to look at all of the things that we wanted to do and prioritized. We thought long and hard about what it was going to take to accomplish  each task. Then we tightened our belts and pinch our pennies to get things moving. We put a contract on the city lot which gave us 12 months to get our funding together for closing. Then we secured a rental agreement on the same property so that we could actually use the land prior to closing. This allowed us to construct our raised beds on the lot, bring soil and get things ready.

The one task that must be accomplished if our project is to succeed is raising the funds for closing. We have re-launched a Kickstarter campaign focused on raising the funds for closing. In less than 24 hours we were 50% funded. We have 28 more days to reach our goal or we do not receive any funds (no matter how close we come).

If you would like to watch the video of the progress we've made so far at city farm, visit www.HelpOurCityFarm.com

 
 

Only 10 Days Left! You Can Make a Difference!

In only 10 short days our Kickstarter campaign will come to an end. Will we reach our goal? Will we get funded? Will our dream of an urban farm happen as planned? I truly believe anything is possible. We have had amazing support from the community, from friends and family and from people we've never met and might not ever meet. On December 06 at 4:55 PM, the campaign will end and if we don't reach our goal, we don't get any of the funds pledged.

There are many ways in which you can help put an urban farm in St. Louis City and bring fresh, naturally-grown food to a community and reduce the environmental impact of shipping food into the city:

Visit our Kickstarter Page for the Expansion Project

Click Back This Project and pledge any amount over $1

Tell others that you've contributed on Facebook, Twitter, LinkdIn and Email

Notify green groups and organizations about our project and ask them to promote our Kickstarter page.

In 10 days, we can still make this happen, but we need your help! Together we can do amazing things!

 
 

Activism by Capitalism

Many people assume when I speak of our plans of taking a vacant city-owned lot and turning it into an urban farm that we have a non-profit business model.

I believe running our farm as a small business makes sense. What better way to contribute to our community's economy? Since we are not a non-profit, we are purchasing the land from the city at full price and that money goes back to the city. While we are not able yet to support our family on our farm income, we believe that once we expand from our backyard farm to our city farm, we'll be able to increase output and thereby increasing our revenue.

With the added land, we'll also require employees to assist with planting, harvesting, retail, packaging/processing and deliveries. These new green collar jobs will continue to contribute to the local economy while our program for expanding our operations via satellite farms will contribute to the community as a whole by: repurposing and beautifying acres of vacant lots, creating opportunities for new agricultural entrepreneurs, increasing city revenue with the purchase of these lots and providing the community with fresh, naturally-grown produce, eggs and chicken that is grown locally.

Though Villarreal Family Farm is a Limited Liability Corporation, we have a non-profit that who's main goal is agricultural education and assisting community members that need access to fresh natural foods. Together we believe that we can make a difference in our community, environment and economy.

We have a Kickstarter project for our city farm expansion project and really need your help! We have only 18 more days to reach our goal or we don't get funded so please pass along our link via email, Facebook and Twitter and consider backing our project: http://kck.st/pyJAdz

 

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In The News

We were so pleased by the recent article in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch about our city farm expansion project. If you would like to read the article, it can be found here: St. Louis Post-Dispatch Article

To help make our expansion happen, please visit: www.HelpOurCityFarm.com  This is direct you right to our Kickstarter page, click on "Back This Project" and any amount of at least a dollar will bring us that much closer to our goal. This is an all or nothing funding platform which means if we don't reach our goal by December 6th, we don't get the funds. So please pass along the link and share it on Facebook, Twitter and via email.

 

 

 
 

Farm Fresh For Everyone

The USDA has a nice tool on their website for locating food deserts (www.ers.usda.gov/data/fooddesert). A food desert is an area that is populated by people however the is limited access to grocery stores or fresh foods. We chose land for our urban farm due to the fact that there was limited access to fresh food and plenty of vacant land. However, I noticed that it didn't quite qualify as a food desert by USDA's standard. Perhaps they ar counting an upscale grocery store and health food grocer that caters more to more affluent members of the community. There seems to be a huge divide in that area and one extreme, there are $500,000 and above housing and on the other vacant lots owned by the city or private owners with vacant houses. The contrast is amazing. I want our farm to be a place where the entire community can have access to fresh, natural foods regardless of their ability to pay and regardless of which side of the invisible line their home falls on.

 I'm so excited to get this project underway. So far we are only 7% funded on Kickstarter but I refuse to be discouraged. Our customers are supportive, our community is outstanding and everyone we've met has expressed a simalar passion to bring fresh, natural foods to all members of our commuinty.

If you would like to help see this project succeed, please visit: www.HelpOurCityFarm.com no contribution is too small and all are appreciated. Please spread the word.

 
 

Villarreal Family Farm Expansion Kickstarter Project

We've Planted the Seeds, Please Help Us Grow We've Planted the Seeds, Please Help Us Grow !
Thank you for your support of Villarreal Family Farm. Because of your support, we are now expanding. Our goal is to provide naturally and locally-grown produce, eggs and poultry to all members of our community by implementing our plans for a full-scale, commercial, urban farm, located at a previously vacant lot in St. Louis City. This will serve as a hub for urban food production, distribution, sustainable living and education. This urban farm will be the first urban agricultural venture of this type in the city of St. Louis.

Just as our efforts started with a few chicks, a packet of seeds and a small patch of land, we know it doesn't take much to accomplish great things. We've partnered with Kickstarter as a donation platform for this project. By pledging as little as $1, you can help this project succeed. Please spread the word. Together we can do great things!
 
 

New Shipper and Happy Days

It's amazing the difference that a shipper can make. I'm so happy to work with FedEx for shipping our eggs and chicken. They make everything sooo easy! No more long lines at the post office and rough handling by certain employees. Automatic customer notifications and peice of mind helps me focus on producing and not driving myself crazy with shipping and tracking.

Please visit our website for more informaton about our proucts, photos of some of our "favorite" hens and our farm blob: www.ourcityfarm.com

 

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The Quiet Before the Storm

I watch the new constantly. If anyone around me wants to know the weather forecast for the week, I can rattle it off in record time. So, I cannot figure out how this storm got by me! I sent my husband to the grocery store and called me to tell me all the shelves for bread are bare. He had to park at a the far end of the lot and for a quiet Sunday evening, the store is packed with frenzied shopper buying up bread, milk and canned goods like there is no tomorrow.

We are expecting an ice storm. A big one! And the last time we had one such as this, we were out of power for almost 4 days. We are formulating a plan now. Where will we reloate the girls (if necessary). Probably the garage. Ranging icecicles is probably not their cup of tea. How fast can my husband build a portable coop? We shall see. What should be hooked up to the generator if we lose power? The fridge...my eggs!! Oh wait, gotta keep the kids warms.....

The ice should start in the next 3 hours and the skys are grey and ominous. It's very creepy. On the news they are using words like, "historic" and "record" winter storm. I don't like these words and they give me a chill on an already chilly day. I think the main question is, what will I do without an Internet connection. Thankfully I'll have my iPhone ready and charged up. It's more "i" than "phone" anyway, so I'll be checking in on orders and email and I'll try and let you know how we're doing....

Stay Tuned!!

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A True Egg Hunt

We just added 3 new blue egg layers! They lay a beautiful turquoise blue eggs. So beautiful that I'd like to post a photo of them...if I could find them! That's right, the hunt is on for these eggs. I checked the nest several times yesterday, to no avail. Then I decided that I needed to watch where these birds were going. I covertly watched from my bedroom window as these blue-egglayers explored their surroundings. Hours later, I would retrace their steps to see if I would find a beautiful blue treasure. I found a nest that another one of my birds created out of a pile of leaves. She was setting for about 40 minutes, when she left, I rooted around and found 1 chocolate colored egg. I'm taking apart the nest and searching still for more eggs. The neighbors are surely laughing at me! I'm sure I look like a big chicken.

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Happy New Year

Happy New Year to everyone! We started the new year off right by adding to our layer flock. We have 3 new blue egg layers and I cannot wait for their eggs. The girls aren't rolling out the red carpet to the new trio but hopefully things will settle down in the next few days as the pecking order is reistablished.

We did lose one of our young pullets. I thought she was old enough to move in the coop with the big girls. However, one of our girls has become increasingly aggressive, she just laid her first egg today, so that probably had a lot to do with it. So I put in my new beautiful pullet two days ago. The first day, things were a little rough, the next day, I heard a loud, terrified squawk. The little pullet lay dead with the new egg layer standing over her, picking at her remains. It broke my heart, I hatched that baby. She was a nice size but apparently no match for this hen.

RIP "Shimmer"...my daughter named this golden flecked little chicken.

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Our Food - What are we puting in our bodies

I started growing foods after our 3rd child was diagnosed with food allergies. That's 3 out of 3! The 1st one has allergies too numerous to list here, the second on has 3 food allergies, which I think was greatly reduced due to eliminating certain common allergens from my pregancy and and breastfeeding diet. Our third child has 2 food allergies. One thing that I had never considered was, growing my own food.

Food allergies is on the rise at an alarming rate. Our food is so processed and we (consumers) are so removed from food production that it's no wonder we have no idea what we really consume. When I had the novel idea of growing the foods that I eat most, it worked out so well that I expanded on it. I started trying heirloom veggies and things that I've never had, seen or even heard of, just to try it. It's amazing, and empowering to grow your own food. I hope that everyone has the opportunity. Even if it's a container of lettuce in your home, or a pot of garlic. The flavor of the foods are amazing. Watching it grow has been amazing for this city girl and my family.

Adding the chickens just seemed like a natural choice and an extension of our garden. People that have known me for years can't believe the dirt-lovin', chicken chasin' woman I've become and I think that's the best compliment. Friends of mine, little by little are growing green things to eat. My mom has tomatoes and strawberries on her condo balcony. It's amazing the positive and transformative impact my little city farm has made on my life, my family's lives and my friends and community's lives.

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Uhgh Winter Time

It is soooo cold. The hens won't leave the coop and I don't really blame them. Yesterday, I made them some special oatmeal with alfalfa, nuts, corn and seeds. They gobbled it up in a matter of minutes. An hour later, two beautiful eggs were laid. Those were the only two for the day, but I can't be too disappointed, it was really cold. Tomorrow, I'll probably have a few nests full of eggs!

I hope the girls are comfortable. We spent two hours wind proofing, water/snow proofing the run. The waterer is heated so they should have frost-free water as well. I love it when their all puffed up to keep warm. They look twice their size, like short fat turkeys. I'll have to upload a photo of them.

 

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Our Chicks Have Arrived

All of our chicks have hatched and have been moved to their new cozy location, safe from the St. Louis cold. Days like this are so exciting. I do enjoy looking at the chicks and their happy little cheeps. Many people wonder how I can look at their little fuzzy faces knowing the task we will need to complete in the coming weeks...

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