As the days get shorter and the weather colder, farms with community-supported agriculture programs shift gears. Many CSAs end their seasons in the fall, but a few continue into December and some go year-round. Here's a list of subscription farms that deliver to Chicago or its suburbs into the winter months. Membership in some has already closed for the season, but we included them for future reference.
Angelic Organics Offers a winter share option consisting of four boxes of storage vegetables—potatoes, winter squash, carrots, celeriac, etc—delivered in November and December for $100; 2008 shares are sold-out. Options for 2009 include a 20-week share running from mid-June through October ($620, $630 after January 1) and a 12-week share from mid-August through October ($420). Pickup sites throughout the city and suburbs. a1547 Rockton, Caledonia, 815-389-2746, angelicorganics.com.
Cedar Valley Sustainable Farm This family farm, specializing in pasture-raised cattle, chicken, and Hampshire-Duroc hogs, offers a meat CSA year-round; you can join anytime. Shares contain enough meat and eggs for 12 to 15 meals for five people per month. A three-month share is $255, a six-month share $500, a year-round share $975. Drop-off locations include Logan Square, Lincoln Square, Lakeview, and Oak Park. a1985 N. 3609th, Ottawa, 815-431-9544, cedarvalleysustainable.com.
Farmer Tom's This Chicago-based CSA offers weekly delivery year-round with an annual membership fee of $60. A full share gets you a bushel's worth of organic and sustainably grown produce and vegetables ($33 a week); a half share a half bushel's worth ($22 a week). Optional add-ons include free-range eggs, additional produce, and baked goods, with more offerings in the works. There are pickup sites throughout the city, and home delivery is available for an additional $6.50. a PO Box 40881, Chicago, IL, 60640, 773-307-3931, farmertomscsa.com.
Genesis Growers This organic farm offers fruit-and-vegetable shares including a six-week fall vegetable share—no longer available—that runs into December ($170). The season resumes in April, with plans ranging from an eight-week spring share to a five-month summer share to an eight-and-a-half-month "season combo" share; prices are still to be finalized. Genesis also has a stall at the Green City Market through Christmas. a8373 E. 3000 South, Saint Anne, 815-953-1512, genesis-growers.com.
Grass Is Greener Gardens This farm in southwestern Wisconsin offers a year-round meat CSA featuring free-range chicken and grass-fed lamb and pork, plus Black Angus beef from neighboring farms. Prices for monthly deliveries November-April range from $390 for poultry only to $785 for a large selection of meat. Eggs, yogurt, honey, and cheese are add-on options; there are drop-offs in Lakeview, Hyde Park, Evanston, and Oak Park. aW8473 Smock Valley, Monroe, WI, 608-966-1128, grassisgreenergardens.com.
Growing Power's Rainbow Farmers Cooperative This urban farm-training program offers weekly baskets of produce from co-op members and community wholesalers year-round. A full-size basket with 12 to 15 kinds of produce is $17, a half-size basket $9, and a full-size basket of all-organic and sustainably grown produce is $28. Orders must be placed by 5 PM Monday; there are drop-off sites in neighborhoods throughout the city, including Englewood, Humboldt Park, and Garfield Park as well as Wicker Park, Lakeview, and Logan Square. a 1741 N. Western, 773-347-1374, growingpower.org/market_baskets.htm.
Irv & Shelly's Fresh Picks This online grocery store offers Fresh Picks boxes, a selection of organic and sustainably grown produce delivered weekly or biweekly in sizes ranging from a single ($18) to a double ($25) to family size ($40). Custom orders including meat, dairy, and eggs are also available. a 5625 W. Howard, Niles, 847-410-0595, freshpicks.com.v
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