This page is a work in progress -- we'll add more faces as new farmers start growing for us and as existing farmers stop dodging the camera.
"Share Organics is a steadfast, wonderful customer for us. We count on their weekly orders and have witnessed their endeavor in sourcing new local growers while remaining committed to their older ones. In our 9 year history (since 2003), we have watched them grow and help build success for us and for the local food movement (we love the bicycle delivery!). They do a fantastic job of supporting our farm and many other local growers, supplying the Victoria community with weekly boxs of beautiful local produce. We are very grateful to be included in their effort, mandate, and promotion of sustainability.
Crops: salad mix, onions, leeks
Dan and Regan Ferguson have been with us a long while now. On their family farm they grow in covered hoop houses which has allowed us to supply a few local restaurants and stores with local salad mix through the "shoulder seasons."
The farm was certified organic for many years and just recently the Fergusons have decided not seek continued certification although still grow to organic standards. This is an interesting conversation among local organic farmers - whether it is beneficial to remain "certified" or not!
An interview with Dennis on Organic Greenhouse Growing. (Thanks to Darin Steinkey for this lovely video!)
"Yes, it is very much advantageous selling bulk to Share. You reach so many homes that we couldn’t possibly and the paper work …well let’s say we enjoy farming more so. So if we have forgotten to mention, thank you very much to you and your staff!!
Contracting ahead gives us an idea how much is going out, give or take a kilo or two.
Thanks again Susan and crew"
Crops: hot house cucumber, tomatoes, peppers, plus sprouts
Location: Central Saanich
Dennis, Michael, and Frank O'Brien are three brothers, each with a different specialty and skillset. Share was one of the first businesses to support the new farm by contracting and purchasing sprouts grown especially for us!
The farm is almost 4 acres with the main heated greenhouse now 19,500 sq feet and roughly 6,000 sq feet of unheated greenhouse space.
"Thank you so much for all your support this year. It really kept us alive. I like bulk orders because we see more volume move steadily. You are a pleasure to deal with and I feel you do all possible to pay a fair price. Keep up the good work! Have you ever thought of opening a branch up island? you have a lot of knowledge and experience in running this distribution system. Instead of reinventing the wheel. I am wondering how it would work up here. Just a thought."
Crops: carrots, potatoes, beets, winter squash
Isabelle grows on a family farm with a number of separate growers on the land. For this reason she cannot get certification for the whole farm although she grows to BC Organic standards. We have been working together with Isabelle to produce more and more carrots over the last 5 years.
West Wind Farm
"...love to work with Share Organics because they are a local company, owned and operated, that understands the Island's food and agriculture issues. I appreciate that Share contract crops so I have a market I can count on and I feel Share works extra hard to make sure all that I am growing for them is used.
Crops: eggplant, parsley, garlic, summer tomatoes
Location: North Cowichan
Wendy is an organic grower but not certified. We appreciate her amazing and beautiful crops... they are beautiful enough to be the pick of a few high-end restaurants in town! She started working with Share, growing garlic, then expanded to eggplant. When our tomato farmer moved on Wendy decided to get into tomatoes and we're so glad she did!
"As a farmer you must always be ready to adapt and change. Not only to the weather, but also the market demands and changes in consumer habits. Over the past few years, Madrona Farm has been growing a stronger and stronger relsationship with Share Organics. We have excelent field conditions for winter growing, without greenhouses.
Thanks to our relationship with Share Organics we have greatly increased our output of winter crops to help maintain steady supply of local, organic crops during the harder to grow month of the year. This has greatly improved our bottom line as it helps to stabalize a more consistant year round income.
This relationship has also allowed us to make more investments in machinery and infrastucture with increased capital during winter months.
After 12 years of growing organic vegetables, Share has helped us to push through the paperwork and complete our application for organic certification. When our vegetables where sold only off our roadside stand, people knew us and could always talk to us. As we have expanded production and distribution this will give the consumer who doesn't touch the dirty hand that gives you clean food the added comfort they need, in a world where people are always wondering where has all the real food gone."
Crops: fall and winter kale, chard, arugula, winter root vegetables, parsnip, rutabaga, purple turnip, potatoes, garlic, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, winter squash
Location: Blenkinsop Valley (Saanich)
Madrona Farm has done a tremendous job filling the winter gap with root veggies, garlic and also both late and early greens. It's a great part of the week when Dave rolls in with the harvest in a full body rubber suit, coated in mud from just harvesting, and perhaps a child in tow to take them to art class or some other activity.
To learn more about the farmers that we source our off-island produce from click here! Search the index for the farm name that we post with our Fresh Weekly Produce.
Discovery Organics are themselves fairtrade certified and help to build relationships with farmers from further away. We choose to work with these folks because we can trust them to source as ethically as possible and choose to support the work they do to improve the conditions for farmers around the world.
"I am so happy with your products and your service... I run a daycare and
to have the food arrive on our doorstep!!!! it is wonderful. (I should
have done this sooner) Thank you.
- Raja Chrimes
"I am always delighted with my box, but yesterday's was especially great.
I just can't get over the freshness of everything. The heritage
tomatoes remind me of my childhood: the chard looks too good to eat! and
all the beans. Thanks for what you do."
- Elizabeth R.
"I am relocating to Vancouver, so I will have to cancel my much-loved
standing order with you. I have talked up your service with all of my
friends all along and will very much miss my Wednesday deliveries! The
quality of the produce delivered far surpasses anything I have been able
to buy from the shops. Indeed it is only on par with the fruit and veg
my mum grew for us in our back garden as kids.
I wish you all the best. "
- H. Labrosse
"You are my new heros! Thank you
for allowing us retired and disabled folks the opportunity to purchase
LOCAL products and to have delivery of such items is fabulous! Thank you just
doesn't seem to cover the work you do. The concept is genius and a fine example
of sustainability benefiting farmer and consumer.
Beth Smith "