Preseason 2015                          Geauga County, Ohio
Jan. 29, 2014

The Fair Share

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"What good is the warmth of summer,

without the cold of winter

to give it sweetness."

~ John Steinbeck




The month of January is always a time of renewal at the farms.


It brings a welcome slowing of the pace, a catching of our collective breath and time to plan for the new season. We get to thinking about what we would like to do differently this time around, from how we can make things run more smoothly, to new crops we should try and new partnerships to explore. It's exciting and energizing to have this time to explore a wide range of possibilities.


We are so excited to share the results from some of our January work:

  • We are pleased to announce a new partnership with Fred Hartzler for our eggs. Fred runs an organic farm near Ashland, and he will be supplying our program with certified-organic, free-range eggs this season. We have always been hopeful to find an organic egg producer, and we are looking forward to working with Fred. 
  • We are working with the Middlefield Original Cheese Co-op to offer an expanded cheese selection to our members.
  • Our farmers are exploring many new varieties and types of vegetables to add to our summer selections.
  • Our farms have made investments in changes and upgrades aimed at improving production. Several have added high-tunnel structures to extend the growing season and improve yields. Red Sled Farm is bringing an additional 10 acres into certified-organic production this year.
  • We have had conversations with a few potential new delivery locations, and look to add some additional sites for greater convenience.

We were thrilled with the number of shares already sold for the 2015 season before the end of 2014, and look forward to brisk sales this winter and spring. Last year some of our sites reached maximum capacity by mid-April, so we always recommend signing up early to ensure you get your preferred pick-up location. We are hoping to have a nearly complete list available within the next two weeks, and we will let you know when it's ready.


We hope you are enjoying this beautiful, renewing winter, and we look forward to reconnecting with you soon!



Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris

~ with Laura Dobson and the farmers of Geauga Family Farms


Sign up for a 2015 share

If you would like to sign up for a summer share, please follow this link to our website. It will take you through the sign-up process in our web store.


Our web store always sends an e-mail receipt for your purchase. If you do not receive a receipt, please let us know immediately so that we can follow up with you.



Heartfelt thanks! 

As you may remember, one of our farm families lost their home to a fire right before Thanksgiving. We are so pleased to let everyone know that Tom Byler and his family have been able to move into a newly constructed home on their farm this winter. The community, including our farm families, pitched in to construct the home this December and January. It was truly amazing.


Many of our members contributed to a fund for the family to help them replace their belongings and cover costs associated with this tragedy. Tom would like to thank everyone for their kind and generous donations. He said his family feels honored and truly blessed to be part of such a wonderful, caring community. Thank you.



Beef and pork sales


Our grass-fed beef is available year round at Geauga Farms Country Meats. Wholesome and delicious, our beef is perfect for nourishing soups, stews, casseroles and pot roasts to warm you up from the inside out. A big pot of meaty, spicy chili would be just right for Super Bowl Sunday, a winner no matter what the score.


Geauga Country Meats is an old-fashioned butcher shop located at 14320 Main Market Road (Route 422) in Burton. Give Dave a call now to reserve cuts and to ensure they have what you would like in stock before you make the drive. The number is 440-834-8476.  



We are happy to share information about Takach Farm, a new pork producer who raises heritage-breed pigs in North Lima. The pigs are born and pasture-raised on the farm. When they receive feed, the feed is grown and mixed on the farm. The Takach family is currently working toward organic certification by following organic practices. They have meat available now. 


Here are the details:


Takach Farm 

Pork from heritage-breed pigs available by the half or whole

$3.50/pound (120 pounds average per half)

Butchered and packaged by Chamberlain Meat

Bacon, ground sausage, baby links in 1-pound packages

Shoulder roast - 5-pound packages; 1-inch pork chops - 4 chops per package; half hams

Pick up at Takach Farm in North Lima unless other arrangements are made.


For more information, or to order, please contact Katie at 330-549-2223 or 330-207-9668.



New pick-up site locations

We are looking for a Saturday pick-up site in the Chardon area, as well as a few Tuesday sites in the Aurora and Stow areas. This is a great opportunity for a church or local business that would like to get involved in the local food movement. The space must be available during the same time period for the 20-week season. Access to a refrigerator/freezer is helpful to allow the delivery of meat, eggs and cheese to the site. It also is helpful to have a team of volunteers to help run the weekly pick-ups.


Please contact  if you would like to host a pick-up.



Join the CSA Member Discussion Group on Facebook

Find even more recipes, tips and tricks for your CSA veggies on the CSA Member Discussion Facebook group. To join the group, click here or visit: 



Local food, farming, environment in the news

We have so many things we'd like to share with you regarding the local food movement and things like the farm bill, the latest news on GMO foods, and much, much more, but we don't want to make our newsletter any longer. Until we get our blog up and running on our website, we are going to include links to articles that you may find interesting. Here are a couple. If you run across any articles you think would be of interest to our members, feel free to send us the link for inclusion here.


(ONLY between the regular business hours of 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday - Saturday PLEASE!)

Farm Representatives:

Laura Dobson, 440-478-9849,

Michelle Bandy-Zalatoris, 216-321-7109,

Grass-fed beef & poultry

Kathleen Webb, 216-408-7719,

Geauga Family Farms, Middlefield, Ohio 44062