Reviews for: Maple Creek Farm CSA
Dont Waste Your Money!!
By: Carol Neumann (Nov 17, 2011)
This was my first season with a CSA farm and unfortunately I picked Maple Creek Farms. We got one excuse after another the first 6 weeks as our shares were incredibly small. Then things started to get a little better but then dropped off again. On top of this our season was cut short by 5 weeks (out of 20 weeks) because of some BS personal problem at the farm. What makes it worse is this personal problem was with just one person. One person and the whole thing shuts down with no refunds given. Totally unprofessional and the fact that they didn't give refunds is despicable. One of the main reasons we joined was to get fresh tomatoes and we only got 6 full sized tomatoes through 15 weeks of service. This was easily the worst 400 dollars I have ever spent.
Hopefully Maple Creek's terrible service wont negatively effect people's decisions to stay the CSA route as I met some other people at the drop off locations that were new this year as well. I know full well that Maple Creek's unprofessional and unethical actions do not speak for the CSA community as a whole and I will not hesitate to join a new farm come next year. I can just guarantee it wont be with Maple Creek.
Do yourself a favor and stay as far away from this farm as humanely possible, at least in regards to giving them your money. The shares were weak and their service even weaker. Any CSA that would shut down the entire season due to a personal problem with 1 person and then not give out refunds is....well, lets just say they dont deserve to stay in business.
In all honesty, even if they hadn't screwed us out of the last 5 weeks of service (which totaled 25% or $100.00 of the total price), I still would have chosen to go with a different farm next year. I think we had 2-3 quality weeks tops.
Trust me on this one, go with a different farm. You will thank me in the long run.
Not given what is promised
By: Steven Dunn (Nov 1, 2011)
The year started late because of weather. The year ended early because someone quit (yes one person). And the 4/3 bushel box, a measure of volume, was filled mostly with hot air. -
Our first time in a CSA
By: Kim Smith (Aug 22, 2011)
We signed up for the first time this year (2011) and are so glad we did. We're not even halfway through the season and we've already eaten vegetables we'd barely ever seen before (kohlrabi, anyone?).
We've been getting lots of summer squash and zucchini so far, and wonderful bunches of healthy lettuces. The sweet corn this past week was TO DIE FOR, and the tomatoes we got a couple weeks ago were so delicious we just ate them sliced with salt and pepper. We got some adorable little potatoes recently, and some beautiful purple sweet peppers too. The only thing that wasn't great quality so far was the broccoli (but that's ok because broccoli is "icky" anyway!).
Michelle sends us a weekly email telling us what to expect in our shares, and giving us links to a variety of recipes to help us figure out what to do with our produce. I really enjoy hearing news from the farm too -- what's getting near to ripening, what impact the weather is having on our food, etc. And most of all I'm comforted to know that there are no chemicals being used on our food or the land. I'm getting a great sense of satisfaction from eating food that's grown in our local area. Highly recommended.
Comments on this Review:
Kim Smith says: (Nov 9, 2011)
I need to update my review of Maple Creek. This CSA suddenly stopped deliveries in mid-October, citing personal issues. Although I'm sorry for what sounds like a pending divorce between the farmers, I can't help but be annoyed at how this was handled. I guess we gambled and lost this time. Not sure I'll sign up for another CSA after this experience.
Carol Neumann says: (Nov 17, 2011)
You really shouldn't give up on CSA farming. I also got screwed by Maple Creek this year, which just happened to be my first year with a CSA farm. I refuse to believe that Maple Creeks unprofessional actions speak for the community as a whole. IMO, CSA farms are the best thing going today in regards to being able to buy quality, fresh food and I hope the CSA scene will continue to grow in size in the coming years. If you allow Maple Creeks actions to sway you from this path.....well, that would be far worse than losing a little bit of money on a bad seed. Stay the path and I am betting we will both be much happier this time next year.
By: Jeff Kaminsky (Mar 5, 2010)
After a few years of thinking about it, last year my wife and I joined Maple Creek Farm. We split a share with a co-worker, so only got half the season. This summer we are doing a full share for ourselves. While last summer was not a great growing season, it was still very good. The quality of everything we got was very high and it has been difficult to eat non-local produce this winter. We have no doubt suffered from it, health-wise. Overall, lots of green came (lettuces, cabbages, kale, etc), and other great veggies. Some things that we were unfamiliar with (kohlrabi (sp?), asian greens, etc.). Yes it is dirty, but we washed everything when we got it and planned our menus around it. Overall, we were very happy and kept having people over to share and they all enjoyed it. 3 of our neighbors signed up for next year after tasting some last summer, so obviously others were impressed also.
A Very Enjoyable Share Season
By: Julie Magro (Sep 17, 2009)
This is my 2nd season as a Maple Creek Farm Share member. Here are my thoughts on the share:
The produce is TOP notch. I'm a Whole Foods shopper so usually I get my share, see what I have, and then run to Whole Foods to pick up the supporting items I need to make my meals like beans, oils, etc. Naturally I stop by their produce section to compare what I got in my share to what they have in the store, I have not been disappointed. For example, last week we got Kale, nice crisp green Kale, I got to Whole foods and while theirs was organic, it was covered in that annoying mist they spray on the veggies and very limp. Kind of gross when I compared it to what I got in my share.
I don't have to wonder. There is real value in knowing where your food came from and who is growing it. The weekly emails from Michelle on the food we are getting, what is happening on the farm, whether they need more or less sun, more or less rain, etc is great because I don't have any questions about the food, what conditions it was grown in, etc. I know where my money is going and how it is being used.
Its easy. I love that I just pick up my box, see what is in it and decide what to make for the week. No wandering around a grocery store for an hour and waiting in checkout lines. This is the way it is supposed to be. If I am not familiar with something in the box, my friend Google comes to my rescue with a few searches and I've immediately have more ideas than I have product to try.
The variety can't be beat. If you start reading any type of health books they will consistently tell you to eat a variety of fruits and veggies and this share has helped us accomplish this. It is VERY easy to fall into the trap of eating the same things you are familiar with week after week after week.
If you are interested in seeing pictures of the share, I've been taking pictures every week and you can view them here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/magro-family/sets/72157621095564284/
By: Lenora Szalach (Mar 12, 2009)
We had a full share for the 2008 season. We were initially concerned that we would waste a ton of food, as there are just two of us, but decided we could just give the extra to coworkers. That didn't happen because our "one and a half bushel" box of produce was only mostly full one time out of the 19 week season (because they started too late and couldn't fulfill the 20 week promise)- and that week I think we had a cantaloupe and a watermelon that took up most of the box.
We expected top-quality produce- which would seem reasonable as they charge $150 more than any other CSA we've seen- but what we got was just plain sad. Every single thing in the box was undersized. The tomatoes were mushy and weren't ripe when we got them. We had enough lettuce to eat salads for every meal- great if you like salads, not great when you consider lettuce is cheap and can't be stored long term. The "bunches" of chard and kale were generally under 8oz- and that's supposed to feed a family of four how, exactly? It was barely enough for a side dish for two. The one time we got broccoli, it had worms. Organic is no excuse for that- there's a bacteria you can use to kill those, or you pick them off!
We had to go to the Farmer's Market to supplement- imagine our delight as we saw lovely decent sized squash for sale at their booth, and then thought about the little baby sized squash that we got that week.
They were nice enough to "find" an extra four ears of "fresh" sweet corn. From the taste, it was left over from the weekend's farmer's market.
Their website had videos talking about the asparagus and the pea patch- two of our favorites- we did not get either of those in the box.
One more complaint- everything was just disgustingly dirty. I grew up eating home grown produce, I understand things grow in dirt but this was ridiculous. Apples do not grow in dirt, they grow 3+ feet off the ground. I might have been ok if it was free- but if I'm paying Whole Paycheck prices, and barely hitting that level of quality- they should at least clean the vegetables.
Overall- they seem like people who thought it would be a romantic idea to go live on a farm, but have no idea how to actually farm it, and it shows in the poor quality they produce.