Hey there folks. We hope everyone is staying home as much as possible, avoiding stress, washing hands, resting, eating healthy and trying to keep that 6′ distance. Schools and many businesses and organizations across the island and the globe are temporarily shutting down over coronavirus. We are all finally hunkering down to wait out this crisis, “flatten the curve” of the timing of acute medical needs, and put our community and elders first.
Last week with the COVID-19 risks clearly laid out, we decided to cancel the regular farmstands for the rest of the 2019–2020 season. We considered the demographic of our customers and family, and the typical close proximity provided by our popularity and petite retail space.
But the lettuce continued to grow, so we tried a ‘socially distant’ distribution experiment with pre-sold boxes on Saturday. We sent out our usual email, but with an order form link. Customers signed up for a large or small prepacked box of ARTfarm produce via that one-time link on our website. The first 40 requests received an order confirmation and order number via email, then were scheduled to arrive Saturday morning at staggered pickup times, keeping a generous distance between each other and us, with a check or exact change in (sanitized) hand.
We were able to distribute the majority of the produce we would have sold at the farmstand, while maintaining a minimum of contact and virus transmission. The prepacked boxes and bags made transactions very quick.
There was more demand than supply, unfortunately, and we apologize for anyone who missed the email or the cutoff.
Farmer Luca has walked the fields and estimates that we do NOT have enough produce for a full scale mid-week (Wednesday) distribution of box shares to our customers. This is actually typical for this time of year, as the season continues to dry up. The monster tomato harvests that broke seasonal records and almost broke the cart a few weeks ago are almost finished now.
A small handful of the customers who were ‘next in line’ for a box on Saturday but missed it, have been contacted individually for a small Wednesday share this week. We are doing our best to accommodate as many people as we can with decreasing harvests.
We will post a signup link later this week on our website with pricing and contents for Saturday (March 21st) ARTfarm boxes again, probably 10 large and 30 small boxes. We’re hoping to put in place a more organized signup process and online form and continue for at least a few more weeks, so watch for another farm email sometime on Thursday or Friday! (If you’re not a subscriber, sign up!) We won’t take any orders directly through texts, calls or other means. Please stick to the signup link, later this week.
Our pineapples are looking good, the dragonfruit vines are looking very healthy and may bear heavily this year, and mango trees have set nicely. We’ll try to keep things going and growing as long as we can.
Stay safe and healthy. And thanks for your support!