Greetings from Horton Road Organics! We want to share with you what is going on at Horton Road and what steps we are taking to keep you, our crew and our community safe.
While some businesses in other sectors are suspending operations, much of the work that we, as farmers, do now will result in the food that is available in mid-summer and beyond. For this reason, we are not in a position to stop all work on the farm. We have already sown many seeds which will be our transplants in the next few months and the first salad mix will be ready in the next few weeks. The remote location of the farm also automatically adds in a level of isolation that is helpful for us.
Our role as food producers is very important and may even become more important during the next few months. We believe that CSAs and small farms will have an important role in keeping people well fed and healthy throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Our farm business will be directly impacted by restaurant dine-in closures and will definitely be hard hit if the area’s farmers markets should close in the upcoming weeks. With the potential of us losing the income streams from wholesale accounts and farmers markets, our CSA program becomes very important to the financial sustainability of our farm.
At this time, our 2020 CSA registration is open and we are signing up new and returning members. For those of you who are concerned about general grocery shopping or attending a farmers market, picking up a weekly box of fresh, local, organic produce can be a convenient way to continue to eat well and support the local economy. If you would like to sign up or refer us to a friend, registration and other information can be found here: Horton Road Organics CSA.
Like many others, we’re taking guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Lane County Public Health, which recommend regular cleaning and hand washing as important preventative measures we can take. Here is what else we are doing on the farm to promote a healthy community:
- For the health of our crew, we have pushed back the start of our educational apprenticeship program by three weeks. New apprentices will arrive in May instead of April.
- We will require all employees to be vigilant about frequent hand washing and will train on other best practices for produce handling.
- We will be increasing the frequency of deep cleaning of our produce washing, packing and storage areas.
- Prior to our first farmers market of the season, we will be upgrading our standards of produce care and handling to better serve our customers.
- We will be asking members of our crew to not work if they are experiencing any symptoms, or are concerned in any way.
We take great pride in the quality of our produce and appreciate all of you who have supported us through the years. Thank you for your continued patronage and support as we all navigate these uncertain times. We look forward to seeing you healthy and happy when we are back at the farmers markets!
Bill, Debra, Lisa and Matthew