Dear friends and customers of Many Hands Organic Farm,
Since one of them dropped on Isaac Newton’s head, falling apples have had a prominent place in our thoughts. I am extremely fortunate to find myself in this magical time of year on our farm, surrounded by falling apples. Wednesday we did another apple pick up, gathering large and luscious looking and tasting Baldwin apples, and one actually did hit John on the head as it made its way earthward, completing the cycle of life in the mighty apple tree for one more season. Of all of the plants and animals that we raise on our farm, the apples most intrigue me and provide me with the sense of awe and connection to natural systems which we can help steward in the pursuit of food production for ourselves and others. I encourage any of you who can, to seize the opportunity to find yourself an apple tree to sit under in the next week or two. You may not discover the law of gravity, but I suspect your sense of being part of this wonderful all-encompassing natural word will be enhanced and you will walk away a more fulsome human being.
CSA Update – Week 22 of 22
Last Week – Week of October 18
This is the last week of the Summer CSA
Week 22 best guess at what you will get
- Peppers – a few left in the walk in
- Brussels sprouts
- Husk cherries
- Chinese cabbage or tatsoi
- Winter squash
Director of Communications at Many Hands Organic Farm – https://mhof.net/
Ari is moving on at the end of November. I can’t imagine anyone could do this job better than they have, being here as a farmer and thus being really in touch with what is going on, but also constantly thinking ahead to what needs to be handled and thirdly thinking creatively for new ventures and ways of promoting our needs, some of which I am not even aware of until they bring them to me! This is the kind of quality and thoroughness we are looking for in our next person.
As a director of communications at Many Hands Organic Farm you will be the support person for logistics of a 100 person CSA, organic pork & poultry operation, and the Many Hands Sustainability Center – the farm’s sister non-profit. Your weekly tasks might include editing and sending our weekly newsletter, promoting our products on social media, managing the farm database and dealing with customers, and delivery details. The position includes management and updating of the website and supporting Julie in various office tasks for the farm, along with tech support. Creativity in our marketing is encouraged, and we love new ideas for how to promote our products as well as our farming and homesteading education.
Necessary job skills and tasks:
– Data management – Microsoft Access, Excel, Mailchimp, Gmail, Google Contacts, Google Photos
– Excellent written and verbal communication skills
– Collaborate with farm staff to update social media and photograph our farming operation (Facebook, Instagram, Nextdoor).
– Marketing plan creation and execution – self-starters that are always looking ahead are encouraged to apply.
– WordPress website upkeep
– Basic PC proficiency as to support farm staff with technical troubleshooting
Salary: negotiable + 26 week vegetable share
Hours: 5 – 10 hours per week, based on season
Most hours can be completed remotely, but the ability to come to the farm as needed for meetings and technical support (once every 1-2 weeks) is preferred. Please send your resume to Julie Rawson at Julie@mhof.net. Feel free to call 978-257-1192 if you would like to talk about the job.
Ham available in 2021
We have added an exciting new item to our 2021 meat order form, and we didn’t want you to miss out! We are already getting some maple bacon from Vermont Packing House in Springfield, VT, and thought we would also get ham from them as well. Hams are $16/lb, and are usually 3-4 pounds. They are smoked at Vermont Packing House in Springfield, VT and made using a natural cure of celery juice and sea salt. They will be available mid to late December. Although the pork is certified organic, the processing has not been organically certified. If you would like to order ham, please fill out the meat order form and send a check to us at 411 Sheldon Rd, Barre, MA 01005. https://mhof.net/organic-meat/
Pre-Order your 2022 CSA Share
It’s been an amazing summer season, and we can’t believe it’s already over! We hope that you enjoyed our produce this season, and might be willing to go on a culinary adventure again with us next year. That’s why we are offering pre-orders for 2022 CSA shares now. Put down a full payment, half payment, or $150 deposit to guarantee your spot in our 2022 CSA. We may raise prices in 2022 for our CSA shares, but we haven’t made a determination of that yet. If you order in this calendar year and put down a down payment you can be assured of this price. Order here: https://mhof.net/csa-order-form/
Order Your Stew Bird today!
It’s Chicken Soup Season! 🐔🥣 – Old layers for stewing available November 7. After our laying hens have finished their 2nd season and before we would need to keep them going during the winter when their laying will go down significantly, we slaughter the older birds. We have about 50 birds available for purchase. These are very affordable at $15 each. Julie chats more about our layers in this video below. You can order them here: https://mhof.net/organic-meat/
Julie’s Health tips
This week I want to talk about Lucy Wyndham, who is an online exercise person. Now, I know there are a lot of them out there, but the reason I like her so well is because she will take a part of the body and focus very specifically on helping one strengthen it, and do it all in 7 minutes. One of my weak areas is my hips, so I like this one – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ENLyAZl4xA4 – Glute and Leg workout. Despite the fact that I work outside about 30 or more hours per week, I find these exercise routines imperative for me to keep full body strength, and they make me happy too, because they get all my lymph flowing.
NEW – Farm store hours
We are now offering walk in sales at the following times:
M-F – 12-1 pm
Always call ahead to be sure of supply.
Available this week
- Free range organic eggs at $8/dozen – the chickens are presently enjoying a range diet of crimson red clover to enhance vitamin A content
- frozen certified organic range raised roaster chickens in the 6-8 lb. range – $7/lb
- dandelion, holy basil, burdock, yarrow and yellow dock tincture in 2 ounce bottles – $12
- frozen certified organic applesauce – just the apples cooked down in water – $7/quart
- 2 ounce jars of comfrey salve – $8 each
- 2 ounce jars of hemp salve – $10 each
- certified organic garlic for seed or eating – $15/lb.
Added new to the list this week – see below
- Garlic powder – $10/2 ounce
- Lavender soap – $6/5 ounce bar
- Cider in gallons – $15/gallon
We need help between now and Thanksgiving.
With some loss of staff and winter soon closing in we need some extra help for the next six weeks or so. We are looking for folks with a willingness to work hard and take direction, in any kind of weather. Regarding remuneration, we can offer a farm vegetable share for half a day, and add things like eggs or turkey futures, if interested, or negotiable rate of pay.
Starting on October 25 breakfast is at 8 and lunch at noon, additionally. Still starting at 7 am until the 25th. Inquire.
What a wonderful week weather-wise – I dare say it was the most enjoyable week of the whole year so far. And we still dodged frost which translated into another very bounteous share for the CSA members. Cross fingers that we can finish out the summer CSA without frost this last week, making for smooth sailing for the 5 week fall CSA. This CSA closed on Saturday with our preferred number of shareholders of 80 families. We spent some time on clerical and administrative tasks to get this underway and will be thus occupied next week also.
After our breakage of our old pig house, Anthony spent a couple of days putting a water system on our new house so that we can move the old house to the shop for repairs. We made cider twice again this week, completely filled our shelves with canned apple juice and are now selling cider 2 times per week. The pigs are enjoying the mash. The turkeys are now out of any water danger as they head up into finished beds in the pond garden (and no rain for an entire week helped also). Chickens have made it across the west field once and are now turning to go back the other way. At that point they will either go to slaughter (our old layers) or will end up in our winter house, running around the entire farm during the day and coming home to roost at night. I am starting to dream of lessened chore responsibilities!
We made our first batch of garlic powder, and sauerkraut, froze some parsley, chard and broccoli, weeded 1 1/3 of our two strawberry beds and started cleaning out our hoop houses for fall repair and planting – a long project. Maya bottled up a summer’s worth of tinctures and Anthony and Cathleen got two more bird houses repaired and out in the field. Thursday we entertained (and well, we got some work out of them too!) 25 UMass students on the farm.