Newsletter: April 1, 2015

This Farm Cares — Blue Sky is at it again!

This_Farm_Cares

This Farm Cares is a state program that promotes environmentally sound farming practices, in addition to helping educate our Florida residents on agriculture’s role in protecting our natural resources. 600 farms throughout Florida have qualified to receive the CARES award. We are proud that Blue Sky Farms is one of them! In addition, to adding their “garden” to help “sustain” the livelihood of their workers and connect with local residents, they have proven their hard work and dedication to conserving our natural resources and protecting our environment. Kudos!
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Newsletter: March 25, 2015

Get to Know Your Farmer — Frog Song Organics

Amy showing off her lettuce. Find the original picture on their facebook page.

John Bitter and Amy Van Scoik, husband and wife team, own and operate a small organic farm just west of Gainesville, FL called Frog Song Organics. After graduating from University of Florida College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, the couple broke ground on their farm in October of 2011 and have been Certified Organic by QCS since March of 2012. They are proud to be producing healthy and fresh food and we are proud to call them one of our own farmers! Continue reading

FPP Newsletter: March 18, 2015

Friendly Reminder to Keep Our Boxes Looking their Best!

We remind our customers often to be sure to return boxes and you’re all doing a great job! The box we give you is a cardboard box covered in a food grade wax that prolongs its life, allowing us to use a box several times before it is finally discarded. This helps us keep our costs down and keeps your membership affordable. Continue reading

Newsletter: March 11, 2015

Pin It, Post It, Tweet It! Enter to Win

You guessed it, we are talking social media. When you’re connected with FPP, you won’t be left in the dark on what to do with all your goodies! As a customer you will learn more about the farms your food comes from and what to do with it! We’ve got hundreds of recipe ideas and pictures of yummy creations. From now until the end of March when you connect with us on social media you will be entered to win! One lucky winner will be randomly drawn from each of the categories below. Join all four and enter to win as many times as you wish.

Pinterest

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Newsletter: March 4, 2015

In like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb

We welcome March with open arms! The beginning of this month is usually ends our winter cold bursts that threaten the crops like the freezes we had last week. We hope that the farmers do not endure any more hardship on their fields this season. We certainly look forward to the pleasant weather that is all too short here in Florida! You know the weather I’m talking about, the not too hot, not too cold, perfectly breezy kind of day! Though the warm weather may feel like spring we will continue to see “winter” crops for another couple of months. This warm weather gives the farmers time to start seedling for our late April and early May spring harvest when we will be seeing green beans, fairy tale eggplant, summer squashes and my favorite…Blueberries!

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‘Newsletter: February 25, 2015

Farm Run! Nicole, Co-Owner of FPP, Rides Along for the Day

As a mom of three and a small business owner, peaceful days are few and far between. But on Tuesday, I was able to step away from screaming toddlers and blinking computer screens to ride shot gun on our weekly farm runs.  I’d been looking forward to this day for a while. It turned out to be the kind of day that would have been great if I were a duck! But even a grey, rainy February day in Florida beats a February day in most areas of the country. We drove down winding roads lined with Live Oaks, listening to the hum of the diesel truck, and I enjoyed the company of our problem-solving, keep the truck running, the people happy, warehouse manager — Tom.
Megan
Our first stop was Blue Sky Potato farm in Hastings. Potatoes are pretty big business in this part of Florida. Blue Sky has a long standing history of supplying potatoes to our area but also being an advocate for the local food movement. This year they are doubling down on their commitment. Rather than hiring seasonal farm hands to work the fields during the potato harvest, Blue Sky started growing a variety of vegetable crops to extend their season year round. Their efforts provide farm workers and their families more financial stability and increase their quality of life by being able to “settle down”. We are happy to support them! Not only are we receiving beautiful farm fresh goodies but we are all doing are part in providing our local residents a better quality of life! This is Megan- Blue Sky’s hard-working, always cheerful, sales person who is in charge of making this project successful. Continue reading

Newsletter: February 18, 2014

Happy Valentine’s Day

We have a sweet Valentine’s Day treat that will keep you buzzing! This week, treat yourself to a jar of Waldoch Honey for 25% off! That’s right! A 1lb jar of pure raw honey for just $7.50 and made by the well known beekeeper, George Waldoch. Type the coupon code BEEtheLove when customizing your order. We are offering $2.50 off this week only. Offer Expires February 20 and only while supplies last.

BEEtheLove

The Honey Man

George Waldoch, aka “the Honey Man”, is the man behind our Jacksonville honey! He has been beekeeping since he was 6 — that’s when he was “old enough” to help his brothers tend to the beehives on their Minnesota farm. Now in his nineties, he still travels all over north Florida keeping bees and has no plans to retire!

Here is a shot of Mr. Waldoch we took a few year back!

waldoch

New FPP Menu Planner

Don’t let eating well be a struggle. To make meal planning as easy as possible, we have created a meal planner that is designed for you to peel off the sticker located on your produce box and place it right on the paper! Easy breezy. Now, take a look at your list and create your meals around the contents of your order. If you want to plan early just write down your produce list instead. Click here for the full size PDF Version: FPP-MenuPlanner3.

MealPlanner

OUR STANDARD BOXES – please note that items may change due to weather or supply issues.

Local Bin (Mini): Local Organic Broccoli, Local Organic Red Romaine, Florida Strawberries, Local Fingerling Potatoes, Local Swiss Chard, Local Honeybell Tangerines), Local White Carrots, Local Organic Red Leaf Lettuce, Local Tomatoes on the Vine
Organic Bin, (Mini): (Local Organic Broccoli, Local Organic Red Romaine, Florida Organic Strawberries, Organic Purple Sweet Potatoes, Organic Mixed Medley Tomatoes), Organic Cucumbers, Local Organic Collard Greens, Organic Garlic, Organic Green Beans

Grab & Go: Local Organic Broccoli, Florida Strawberries, Local Honeybell Tangerines, Local White Carrots,  Local Organic Red Leaf Lettuce, Organic Cucumber, Organic Bannaas, Local Tomatoes on the Vine, Organic Ambrosia Apples
Salad Box: Local Organic Broccoli, Local White Carrots, Local Organic Red Leaf Lettuce, Organic Cucumber, Local Sweet Mini Peppers, Local Green Onion, Local Mixed Tomatoes, Local Mini Cucumbers
Fruit (Add-on): (Florida Strawberries, Local Honeybell Tangerines, Organic Blueberries, Organic Bosc Pears), Organic Bananas, Organic Ambrosia Apples
Smoothie Box: Florida Organic Strawberries, Honeybell Tangerines, Bananas, Ambrosia Apples, Local Organic Kale,  Mango, Organic Carrots (no tops), Organic Baby Spinach, Local Grapefruit
Addition Items in the Shop: Organic Garlic, Organic Green Beans, Organic Hass Avocado, Local Brussel Sprouts, Local Beets

Strawberries Unearthed!

It’s a magnificent time for strawberries in Florida and with Valentine’s day approaching its the perfect time to highlight these little gems! Strawberries are considered a winter crop in our area, typically coming into season in January and lasting through March or early April. They are high in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory nutrients and are an excellent source of vitamin C, containing 75% of the recommended daily value. Strawberries are perfectly delectable on their own, or used in salads, baking, and sweet toppings like jam or salsa.

We’ve had some beautiful berries the last few weeks! To keep them looking good, store your unwashed strawberries in your refrigerator. Wait to wash your berries until you’re ready to prepare or eat them. Excess moisture will cause mold and mushiness. For the very best berry longevity, put a sheet pan lined with paper towels in your fridge and store the berries on it in a single layer without them touching. Ok, we know this isn’t always practical, so we store ours dry in air-tight glass container lined with a paper towel on the bottom to collect any excess moisture. And although we just told you not to wash your berries, we have had a few customers tell us that washing berries in a vinegar bath really helps. The bath makes sense because the vinegar would kill the fungus that causes the berries to get soft spots and then mold. Just be sure to dry the berries! You can check out more information at Momables: http://www.momables.com/how-to-keep-berries-fresher-longer/.

This Valentine’s week we’re featuring a collection of strawberry recipes designed with love in mind. Try sharing some of these sweet, romantic and beautiful recipes with the ones you love.

Strawberry Recipes

Would you like to give your sweetie some of those VERY expensive “tuxedo” decorated strawberries? They are cute as a button, aren’t they? This video will teach you how to make your own at home for the low, low price of a little bit of chocolate!

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

Returning your produce box clean and undamaged means that we can use it again and again. This keeps costs down, minimizes landfill waste and keeps your carbon footprint smaller. Boxes that aren’t returned will incur a $5.00 replacement fee, so be sure to put it out for pickup!