Our HillFields Farm Membership is a great way for customers who believe in “real, nutrient dense, transparent food” to support a farmer.
WHY WOULD A PERSON CONSIDER JOINING OUR FARM?
Q1: Is the relationship to the actual farmer important to you? (Do you want to support a farmer?)
Our farm focus's on the farmer-customer relationship as much as the product.
In fact, in our survey of current members, we find again and again that the number one reason for joining was to support a local farmer.
Farm members want to be able shake the hand that feeds them.
There’s something rewarding about knowing you are doing your part to support a local farmer.
Call it satisfying your “food conscience.”
Our Farm Membership is a mechanism you can put into your weekly routine that allows you to access great-tasting food, knowing there’s a real farm family’s livelihood depending on it.
Inherent in this arrangement is the understanding that there is a risk. Mother Nature may send too much sun or rain, bugs or disease, and a certain crop or crops may not appear in your share that summer.
On the flip side, there may be a bumper crop of tomatoes or cucumbers, and you’ll be swimming in cucurbits.
Their motivation for supporting the farm is just as much about having the back of the farmer as it is about getting the full financial value of their share.
Make sure you read that last sentence again… it’s kinda huge.
But this relationship goes both ways.
When you join our Farm, we your farmers will cultivate a connection with you too. This means
We learn your names and work hard to make our farm community feel like a small family.
We might plan events to get you engaging with our farm.
We try to add value to your life, by teaching you about our food’s story, or how to prepare it.
We do things to help you succeed at eating our food.
This doesn’t mean you have to take advantage of these connecting points. But when you do, your Farm experience becomes more rich for both you and us as your farmers.
This relationship experience is part of what you are paying for in our farm experience.
Q2: Do you value having quality vegetable ingredients that actually taste good and are organically grown?
Cardboard tomatoes, bland carrots, watery celery or lettuce....Blah.
Taste matters for foodies. Because you know that putting together a terrific meal in your kitchen isn’t just about your skill.
It starts with the ingredients.
The second most important quality of our Farm “masters” is that they love food. Real food.
Food that tastes like it should, because it’s grown in quality soil.
In fact, our Farm often create food snobs, because customers finally experience how a carrot should really taste, and they cannot go back to the watered down version called “baby carrots” at the supermarket.
If you really love cooking and you really value taste, then you will LOVE being part of our Farm.
Because we are all about providing high-quality, artisanal vegetables that make your home dining experience feel like an event.
You’re paying for that taste experience when you join our Farm.
If you’re just looking for a basic celery and carrot at the cheapest price so you can make an iceberg salad — this is not your gig.
Q3: Are you willing to try new foods? (Really?)
Our Farm will push you to try new foods and explore variety in your kitchen.
Read between the lines here: You will discover new veggies you love, and you’ll discover new veggies you hate.
Part of the Farm experience means getting exposed to a wide variety of vegetable cultivars. We put veggies in your box that you may have never seen before, and we teach you how to eat them.
It’s all part of our great goal of developing food diversity and teaching our communities (and our kids) how to eat seasonally again. If you want to grow in the kitchen, you have to push yourself to try new ingredients.
Here is an actual quote by a Farm member:
"HillFields Farm has introduced my family to veggies that I never would have bought at the store, and I learned that we liked them! Also it helped me become more creative in my cooking."
Q4: Do you need control in your menu planning?
Farm members have to learn to be flexible with their menu and make things work in the kitchen, because you often don’t know what you will get in your box until a few days before they pick up.
Some people love this spontaneity. Others will be stressed by it.
If you’re someone that wants to have spinach lasagna on Wednesday, and your box doesn’t have spinach that week, will you be upset that you have to go elsewhere to supplement your Farm box contents?
If so, then you may be better off buying from the supermarket.
This is the number 1 reason non-renewing members give us for leaving our Farm:
“I didn’t get enough of the things I wanted, and I got too much of the things I didn’t.”
Our Farm works best for customers who see their kitchen as a creative space, and our vegetables as the “paint” for their canvas.
They can handle the spontaneity required and are willing to experiment with new ingredients to make old meal templates come alive in new ways.
Q5: Are you willing to work at eating the Farm way? Patience, my apprentice. (It’s a marathon, not a sprint to the finish line).
Some customers have taken a few seasons before they learned how to consistently use the box’s full contents.
That means you will waste some food on the front end, as you go through your learning curve.
Come into this experience with an adventurous spirit, and go easy on yourself if you fail to eat the entire box every week at first. It’s really hard to do, especially as a rookie to the system.
There will be many weeks when you have best intentions to be a super-chef and maximize your Farm tasting experience… and then real life sets in, and you find yourself simply eating the broccoli raw with sour cream.
It can sometimes feel like you’re “failing” in your original goal to change the way you eat.
Also realize that in this journey to kitchen mastery, you’re going to waste some food, especially in the first learning season.
This is a really hard reality for some to face.
Like all paradigm shifts, it takes time to develop new habits and learn how to eat nimbly.
If you are committed to learning how, you can do it!
Q6: Are you looking for a “cheap deal”? Are you comparing CSA prices to the supermarket?
People who fully embrace the Farm model don’t look for their membership to be a “deal” or a bargain.
And they don’t compare the Farm experience to the supermarket price table.
Read that again. This is a really key point.
It is absolutely understandable to ask, “How much does it cost?” And to then weigh the pros and cons.
Supporting a Farm financially however is not just about doing a cost analysis of each vegetable you receive in your box and comparing it to what you’d pay at Coles or Woolies. Although you will frequently come out ahead.
Our vegetables have added value because every one of our vegetables is telling a story.
Not just the story of how the food was raised, how it was harvested, or what struggles it faced to come to your plate.
Not just the story of the farmer and how you help them live out their calling to the land.
EVERY VEGETABLE IS ALSO TELLING YOUR UNFOLDING STORY.
Our vegetables become a means to an end: they showcase your journey with food.
They are the starring attraction in your quest to master your kitchen space, your families health and prepare a delicious meal to rival any restaurant fare — a meal you can be proud of.
This is not something any supermarket can give you.
Farm Members appreciate this added value of our product, and are willing to pay a premium for it.
So if you’re saying to yourself, “Well that’s more than we’d pay at _____” ~ you may want to hit the pause button.
How’d you do?
Did you pass the quiz?
Remember, our Farm is just one model out there for getting fresh farm food onto your table. For those who value the story, the journey, and the farmer relationship behind the food, it can be a great option that can change the way you eat forever.
But there’s no shame in passing on our Farm Membership.
We just want you to be in the right fit.
As in all things, expectations determine how you experience the product. To set you up for Farm Member success, make sure your expectations align with the philosophy of our Farm before you commit.
If you think you’re ready,
Secure your spot on the Farm "Here"