As we launch our 2023 Local Food Share season, we want to be as transparent as possible about why the prices of our shares are increasing for this upcoming summer season. Over the past few months, we have deliberated heavily on the subject of Local Food Share pricing. We rely on Local Food Share sales to sustain our operations and support local farmers, but never want the price of food to hinder people from buying local, or being able to eat at all.
After much deliberation, we realized we needed to raise our prices. Read below to understand why:
1) We increased the size of our ‘Veggie’ and ‘More Veggie’ Shares!
In 2022 we felt that our shares weren’t quite big enough for many of our shareholders. To make up for it and increase the value of what you take home each week, this year’s shares will be slightly larger!
The Veggie Share will now include 4-6 varieties during the early season (June-July), and 5-8 varieties per week during peak season (August - October). Over the course of the season, it will average about 1 more item per week than last year.
The More Veggie Share will now include 5-7 varieties during the early season (June-July), and 6-10 varieties per week during peak season (August - October). Over the course of the season, it will average about 1 more item per week than last year.
2) The realities of our economy have shifted over the past year.
General inflation has peaked at around 9%
Supply chain issues cause there to be limited supply of essential farming inputs, which makes basic items like packaging, seeds, etc. to be much more expensive for producers.
Gas prices jumped to over $4 per gallon last summer
One of our producers shared with us that their diesel cost for the 2021 growing season was $4,000, and shot up to $11,000 in 2022. 2021 was one of their highest revenue years they’d seen, but they had comparatively less profit because of the increased costs.
At GoFarm we allow our farmers to set their own prices, which is key to our mission and critical to a sustainable and equitable food system. Farmers base their prices on the actual value of the food, which takes into account:
the cost of land, water, seeds, equipment, etc.
the manual work required to keep soils healthy, vibrant, and nutrient-rich
the long hours and labor required by farmers and farm workers, while ensuring equitable and safe working conditions.
Since producers are facing higher on-farm costs, the cost of food is increasing as well. During the 2022 growing season, GoFarm’s average cost of food increased by 12% over the 2021 cost. We expect that this trend will continue into the 2023 season. This is true for vegetables, fruit, as well as our add-on shares including mushrooms, microgreens, coffee, eggs, and flowers.
3) GoFarm is committed to paying fair and equitable wages to seasonal staff.
As the cost of living continues to rise along the Front Range, we have chosen to increase wages offered to summer interns, causing our business expenses to rise.
In summary, due to increased share sizes, inflation and an unprecedented increase in cost to produce food, and an increase of GoFarm labor costs, it has become necessary for us to adjust Local Food Share prices to reflect these rising costs.
If the price increase has made it difficult for you to afford local food from GoFarm, we highly encourage you to check out our SNAP and discount share options!
SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps) is a federally funded program that provides financial assistance on food purchases. Through GoFarm's participation in Double Up Food Bucks, customers paying with SNAP receive 2 for the price of 1 on all Colorado-grown produce.
This means that GoFarm customers who pay with their SNAP/EBT/Quest card automatically receive 50% off all food purchases!
To learn more about SNAP eligibility and signing up for SNAP benefits, please visit the Colorado Peak website.
If you are not enrolled in SNAP, we know that barriers may still exist to affording healthy, local food. If you are experiencing financial difficulty accessing local food, are within the income qualifications specified on this chart, or if anyone in your household is enrolled in Free and Reduced Price School Meals, Medicaid, or WIC, you can apply for a 50% off coupon code using the form on this webpage.
For questions about accessing local food, you can also reach out to Jess Soulis, our Director of Community Food Access Program, at email@example.com.
We truly appreciate your understanding, and we thank you for taking the time to read this statement. We hope to continue having your support as we move forward!