<h2>We are Farmers Too</h2> Many people don't realize that Miranda and I, the co-founders of The Organic Box, are also owners of Just-A-Mere Organic Farm in Creston, BC. &#160;Just-A-Mere Farm is our primary source of BC fruit in the summer and fall, and is a source of great pride for our food family. Each August, we fill your box with the very best Rainier, Skeena and Sweetheart cherries in North America, grown right on our farm. &#160;In the fall, our members get treated to an avalanche of big, beautiful apples. &#160;In between we have other fantastic crops to share with everyone and add to the bountiful harvest we build each year here in Alberta. Just-A-Mere Organic Farm is truly a family matter. &#160;In 2011 we bought the farm from its founding family. &#160;It had been previously leased for 20 years to a commercial grower and had become extremely dilapidated and disused. &#160;There was environmental contamination from leaking fuel tanks, buildings were in disrepair and falling down, the irrigation system was contaminated, and the orchards were overgrown with signs of significant disease. Miranda, myself, and our extended family, have worked in partnership with the original owners to rehabilitate the farm. &#160;Margaret, our farm manager, grew up on the farm as a child when her father was still running the orchard. &#160;She came to work for us as soon as we took possession and has been the steward of its rehabilitation. &#160;For three years she has worked tirelessly to restore what was once one of the great fruit orchards in BC back to its leading position in the valley. &#160;Today, four members of her family now work on our farm, re-learning the skills of fruit production and handing down generational knowledge that serves us all. With the support of some federal grants and other funding sources, we have cleaned up the contamination, installed new fuel and hazardous material storage, rehabilitated the buildings, restored the health of the orchard, re-established the pond as a riparian paradise for beneficial insects and wildlife, rebuilt the irrigation system, and brought the entire farm back into full food production. &#160;We have also brought the operation through the three-year organic transition process and this summer we will become fully certified organic. <img style="border: 10px solid white;" title="Margaret" src="/uploadedImages/009_-_This_Week/Photo0296 Margaret with 'Small Sugar' pumpkin.jpg" alt="Margaret" align="right" />When I think about what we have achieved on this small family farm in one of the great fruit valleys in our country, I swell with pride. &#160;The Organic Box was started to give agricultural families an established, local market of people who valued small scale food production, organic practices, and an alternative food system, and were willing to be buyers of our food. &#160;Truly, we are doing it. &#160;Our members have the gratitude of hundreds of farming families from Edmonton, to Creston, to Peru. &#160;Take a few moments and read some of their stories in the 'Our Producers' section of our website. By being a member of our food family, you can have confidence that your food dollar is going towards real people who are producing real food and working every day to change our relationship with our food and our health. &#160;We are building an alternative food system and our work over the past four years is paying dividends in more ways than I can count. &#160;Thank you for your support! At The Organic Box we are always growing, always looking for ways to get better, and always trying to find ways to fill more of your shopping basket with Alberta and BC food producers.&#160; We are growing better together! Have&#160;a Great Week! Danny. Founder, The Organic Box. <h2>Featured&#160;Products and Producers:</h2> &nbsp; <table cellspacing="15" cellpadding="0" bgcolor="#edf0e9"> <tbody> <tr> <td> <h2>&#160;New Local Dairy</h2> Rock Ridge Dairy is located in Ponoka, AB. It is one of two certified organic dairy processing facilities in the province. It is run by Cherylynn and Patrick Bos, and Rock Ridge has just introduced some new products!!! Enjoy some fresh, certified organic cream : 1 L of Half and Half Cream (10% M.F.) 1 L of Whipping Cream (35% M.F.) Absolutely delicious, and locally made. It doesn't get better than this.</td> </tr> <tr> <td> <h2>&#160;Local Season Victory</h2> As we grow and expand out local network we are seeing more and more locally grown products earlier in the year. It is such a fantastic thing to see the switch from imported produce to local goodies! And we have so much to celebrate right now! Enjoy the local <strong>red rhubarb, garlic greens, bok choy, red radish, cucumbers, tomatoes, salad greens, spinach, arugula, green onions, dandelion greens, and potatoes</strong>! And huge thanks to all of our amazing local farmers that are roughing it out there and being outstanding stewards of some beautiful land.</td> </tr> <tr> <td> <h2>&#160;Stonefruit Season</h2> We're experiencing on of the best California stonefruit seasons we have ever seen. There are <strong>peaches, nectarines, apricots,&#160;and plums </strong>- all full of great flavour and buttery texture. These are all coming to us from our friends at Homegrown Organics in California. Since 1998 Homegrown has expanded into a dedicated co-op of likeminded farmers, all committed to environmental stewardship, certified organic growing, and high quality fruit. We are always impressed with their delicious produce and love seeing arrival of the stonefruit</td> </tr> </tbody> </table>