From the ground up: Russell Farms CSA Program
Hello! My name is Allison Russell and I am the creator of Russell Farms Farm Share Program. I’m sharing this post with you because as a consumer I think it’s so important these days to know your farmer and as much as you can about where your food comes from so, here is my story.
Both of my parents own a produce business therefore we ate ALLOT of fruits and veggies growing up. When I went away to college in 2011, I realized how good I had it eating fresh off the farm. The first week of my freshman year I was already sick of cafeteria food. I would receive boxes of fresh produce on a weekly basis from my mom. It was much better then any store purchased produce. This lasted all my college career until my senior year. I thought, if I could show people the difference of eating top quality healthy local produce, and knowing where their food is coming from, it could positively impact a healthy lifestyle.
Since I have grown up in the produce farming/retail world, I understand what days of “shipping time” can do to the flavor/quality of produce. There is no comparison to receiving it fresh off the farm. I took that for granted when I was growing up. My senior year of college I decided to pursue something I was passionate about. Allowing the local community to experience what I have experienced my whole life, having fresh produce off the farm. This led me to develop Russell Farms Community Supported Agriculture Program (CSA or Farm Share). From my Penn State dorm room in my senior year, I built a fully functioning website and established the CSA Program. That summer I spent my time working at our Vestal retail location. Seeing the smiles and how satisfied customers were when they came to pick up their share gave me a great sense of satisfaction and made me very proud of this program.
I later graduated college, pursued my degree, and got a full-time job in finance at the worlds largest beauty company, L’Oreal in NYC. I soon realized how much I missed the relationships and face to face interaction with customers and members of the Farms Share Program and retail business. I packed my bags and left what some would call a “dream job” and decided to make the move back to my small hometown of Brackney. I can now say it was the best choice I have ever made. I look forward to meeting as many members I can this season and get your feedback on the program! Feel free to contact me Russellfarmsinfo@gmail.com