Here’s a quick overview of the plans for the meat CSA, which Judi and Tom will be operating from Yeehaw Farm, one of the two farms in the Cool Beans vegetable CSA.  They’ll have a website focusing solely on that program shortly, and at that point, we’ll simply have a link here to connect to it.  It will be too confusing to have the information for both programs here long-term.

But in the meantime, several people have asked for information, and we’re offering a discount if you sign up for both programs, so it makes sense to at least write up a brief description and give you some numbers to look at.  You can reserve your spot for the Cool Beans CSA now, and add the meat CSA after you’ve had time to look over the information, and we’ll apply the discount.  So please don’t feel the you need to rush through this.

The plan is to begin the meat CSA in January of 2011, but Tom and Judi are still wrapping up various legal aspects of this – creating an LLC for it, etc – so I’m going to hesitate just a bit and not say that the Jan 2011 start-up is one hundred percent certain.  What I’m going to do here is tell you everything that I know about their plans, and if you want to email me for more information, I’ll send you Tom’s cell phone number and email, and you can contact him directly.

The Radels are not new at this, they’ve been raising all of the meat for their extended family for generations, and Judi’s father raised animals on a commercial scale at one time. They have the experience and infrastructure to do this on a scale appropriate for a CSA.

The animals are raised as humanely as possible and are not given growth hormones or other medications which may pass through to the meat.  Their brochure will have more specifics – I don’t raise meat animals myself, and I’m not the right person to write out the exact details.  But I buy my beef and pork from them because I know that it’s the safest meat I can buy.  In fact, my grown children are getting Yeehaw Farm meat for Christmas this year!

A full share is twenty pounds of meat a month, and half share is ten.  I’ll list the breakdown for the full share, and you can divide that in half for the smaller size.  The twenty pounds would be roughly half ground meat or stew quality, and half higher-end cuts.  The projected breakdown is 12 pounds of beef, 7 of pork, and 3 of chicken per month.  The chickens may not be available in the first few months, as they can’t be raised at this time of the year, so this is something that, in the first year, would have to even out over a few months as they get started up.

“Full share” refers to the 20 pound amount, and “half” to ten; there are also twelve and six month options.  In developing this page I had to be careful not to think of a six month meat share as a “half”.  So keep in mind that the Cool Beans program has two sizes, which run for the same time period, but the meat CSA has two dimensions, size and time.

Other meats may be available (goat, organ meat, veal, other poultry) as an a la carte sort of thing periodically.  In this first year, it’s difficult to determine exactly what breakdown customers will want, and of course they have to list that breakdown so that people will be able to make informed decisions.

The meat would be frozen.  Pickup dates and times are still being tweaked, but the important thing for you to know now is that they’ve found excellent, thick styrofoam coolers that will keep meat frozen for as much as 24 hours even in hot temperatures.  Bacon will most likely be a separate item, since there is only so much per pig!  If you’re in both programs, your meat can be delivered, once a month, at the same time as your weekly vegetable pickup.

Prices – that’s what everyone really wants to know, of course! – are listed here, with a per pound breakdown. First, I’m listing prices if you’re in the Yeehaw Farm Meat CSA but not a member of Cool Beans, which provides veg and some fruit. Then, I’ll list the combined membership prices.

Meat CSA only, twelve months, full share:  $1600, or $6.70 per pound.

Meat CSA only, six months, full share: $875, or $7.30 per pound.

Meat CSA only, twelve months, half share: $925, or$7.70 per pound.

Meat CSA only, six months, half share, $500, or $8.30 per pound.

Cool Beans only, full share, 24 weeks veg, fruit and value added products, $500.

Cool Beans only, half share, 24 weeks, veg, fruit and value added products, $275.

Cool Beans Full Share plus Meat CSA for twelve months, full share:  $1,475 for the meat ($6.15 per pound) plus $450 for Cool Beans, $1925 total.

Cool Beans Full Share plus Meat CSA for six months, full share: $825 for the meat ($6.90 per pound) plus $450 for Cool Beans, or $1,275 total.

Cool Beans Full Share plus a half share of the Meat CSA for twelve months:  $875 for the meat ($7.30 per pound), plus $475 for Cool Beans, $1,350 total.

Cool Beans Full Share plus a half share of the Meat CSA for six months: $475 for the meat ($7.90 per pound) plus $475 for Cool Beans, $950 total.

Cool Beans Half Share plus Meat CS for twelve months, full share:  $1,475 for the meat ($6.15 per pound) plus $250 for Cool Beans, $1,725 total.

Cool Beans Half Share plus Meat CSA for six months, full share:  $825 for the meat ($6.90 per pound) plus $250 for Cool Beans, $1,075 total.

Cool Beans Half Share plus a half share of the Meat CSA for twelve months: $875 for the meat ($7.30 per pound) plus $260 for Cool Beans, $1135 total.

Cool Beans Half Share plus a half share of the Meat CSA for six months:  $475 for the meat ($7.90 per pound) plus $260 for Cool Beans, $735 total.

I realize that especially in a start-up year there are many other questions you might have.  Please use the link above to contact me if you have questions, and I’ll get back to you quickly with an answer or (more likely) the contact information for Tom and Judi so you can email them or speak to them directly.

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