Join Our Harvie Farm Team!

Harvie is seeking part-time interns for our Harvie Farm Team! Farm Team members will act as independent farm-to-fork sales representatives and help connect consumers to farms in the Pittsburgh area including Cherry Valley Organic Farm, Who Cooks For You, Harvest Valley Farm, Rivendale Farms, and more.

We are looking for motivated, energetic, and dedicated individuals to connect the Pittsburgh community, workplaces, employees and consumers to our Pittsburgh area Harvie farms by building relationships both on and offline. You will get as much or as little as you put into this position. For example – just want to share information on your blog in a more traditional “affiliate”style? We have a place for you. Have some extra time and really want to engage with your community one on one about farm-to-fork eating? You’ll be rewarded for that as well!

We want to work with people who can answer yes to most of these questions:

  • Do you vote with your dollar by supporting your local farmers?
  • Are you always telling family and friends about the importance of local food?
  • Are you considered the “go-to” person in your crowd when it comes to health and local food questions?
  • Do you enjoy working with people and building relationships?
  • Do you already have a platform to spread the local food word on your blog, Instagram,  Facebook or LinkedIn?

Ways to Participate:

INFLUENCER

Engagement Level = Low

Income Potential = Varies depending on number of followers

Are you active on social media with a high number of followers? Do you have a health or wellness related blog? Want to blog about farm shares and share recipes? We’ll give you a customized link to track back sales to your social media and blog activities!

REGIONAL SALES

Engagement Level = Medium

Income Potential = Medium- High

Research, identify and build relationships with community members and organizers, put up posters, distribute literature and table at health and food related events in predetermined areas.

WORKPLACE SALES/LOCATION COORDINATOR

Engagement Level = High

Income Potential = Medium – High

Research, identify and build relationships with HR managers, wellness program managers, office managers or business owners to develop a farm share pick up location. This could include cold calling, setting up and attending meetings, doing educational presentations, securing location sites and promoting membership. Potential to help establish workplace farm share programs, staff a workplace pick up location and act as the point of contact for the farm and members. Other duties may be needed and will be assigned by the farm.

What you get:

  • 10 percent commission first year/5 percent commission second year directly linked back to your sales efforts.
  • Potential for a comped farm share based on a minimum sales requirement
  • Earn other Harvie gear (hats, hoodies, t-shirts, mugs, etc.)
  • Weekly calls with other Harvie Farm Team members
  • Private Facebook Group with other Harvie Farm Team members
  • A dedicated Program Manager to help you succeed
  • Tool kits to help in the sales process
  • Customized tracking link to track back sales directly to you

Other position details:

  • Work as little or as much as you want
  • Independent contractor position paid on commision as a percentage of sales
  • Must be able to do on-farm visits as part of the onboarding process

Fill out the application here. Our program manager will be in touch with you!

Here’s how I help market farms

[Also in this series: The Albatross of Vegetables,  “We sold out 7 weeks before first delivery…”, “You’re Really Going to Pay That?” or How I’m Going to Make your Farm More Profitable ]

Dear Farmers and Supporters,

Hello, Stefanie here!  As Simon mentioned in the previous email, I’m the community manager for Harvie and my primary job is to help you sell more shares while simultaneously ensuring your members are the most successful farm share members they can be.

While it’s true Harvie certainly can “sell itself”, if your community doesn’t know, you’ve missed the opportunity! We realize farmers wear multiple hats and marketing efforts have a tendency to fall to the wayside when there is planning, planting and harvesting to tend to instead.

That’s where I come in.

I’ll work with you one-on-one to develop a strategy to meet your individual business needs. We’ll do a consultation call to get to the nitty gritty of your business goals and then we’ll work together to implement it.

Some of the key things we’ll help you with include:

Email drip campaigns

Social media strategy and images

Customized print materials like postcards, brochures, rack cards, and posters

Templates for press releases, lunch and learn presentations and farminars

Weekly marketing calls with Harvie staff and fellow farmers

Website reviews


“Why I Farm” social media campaign series

Want to hear it for yourself? Here is what Ford from Sustainable Harvest Farm has to say about the work we’ve done for him this year:

“Harvie not only provides a great software system for managing your CSA Shares, they also provide tremendous support on marketing. The team at Harive is there to help you promote and market your farm. In the past I would have had to hire a person to do that work, now I’ve got a wonderful team that helps me and understands my needs. Just this season alone the team at Harvie has created… farm place cards that are great for leaving with new contacts, a farmers market banner, a 3×4 sticker for my box trucks, a food storage guide for everything that we grow, a private Harvie only members FB cooking ideas group, and email content ideas for connecting with more customers. It’s so cool to work with a company that truly succeeds when you succeed. It’s a win win for everyone.  Thanks Harvie!” ~ Ford Waterstrat, Sustainable Harvest Farm

Think email marketing is dead? Think again! We generated close to 200K in sales from warm lead campaigns for the 19 farms who participated!

Joan at One Straw Farm said  “I would be very encouraging to anybody to try the warm leads (Harvie marketing lead) campaign. It blew me out of the water. I have people coming back from years ago. I’ve even been getting emails from people saying they are sorry they moved away. I’m happy all the way around. I’ve gotten 188 shares with Harvie’s marketing campaign.”

Diane Riehm of Riehm Produce Farm feels like we are part of her farm staff: “Stefanie has been a plus as the Harvie Farm’s community manager when it comes to marketing. She responds quickly. Works tirelessly to make sure that our farm gets the best looking materials and tutorials for our CSA customers so they are comfortable with the customization and personal profile tools. She has gone beyond our expectations with her skills in putting together for us drip campaigns and sales funnels tools. It feels like she is part of our staff here at the farm. If you want to bump up your CSA game just pick her brain and you will love what she does”. ~ Diane Riehm, Riehm Produce Farm, Tiffin OH

We also help your members be the most successful farm share members they can be: because what’s the point in spending all that time on marketing and sales if they never return?

A few key things we’ve done this year are:

Launched a Harvie Member private Facebook group that has seen lively daily conversation from members all over the US, Canada and Australia.

Provide your members with a thorough customer training series to get them familiar with the new system for you.

Ongoing creation of weekly recipe cards, storage tips, and videos to help members cook with their farm share.


Where to Store Your Farm Share Reference Guide


First recipe card


Harvie members being inspired by other Harvie members on the member Facebook group

When your farm joins Harvie, you are not only getting a great software system: you are getting a whole personalized marketing team right at your fingertips, because we don’t succeed unless you do!

Have questions about the marketing services we provide our Harvie farms? Feel free to reach out to me at stefanie@harvie.farm.

-Stefanie Jaeger
Harvie Community Manager
stefanie@harvie.farm

Also check out:

 

“We sold out 7 weeks before first delivery…”

[Also in this series: The Albatross of Vegetables, Here’s how I help market farms ,“You’re Really Going to Pay That?” or How I’m Going to Make your Farm More Profitable ]

Dear Farmers and Supporters,

In my last email, I talked about the retention gains of 15-30% that Harvie farms are seeing. However, there is a second question of equal importance: are farmers able to attract members and increase sales?

Yes!

Robyn at Park Ridge Organics said , “We sold out 7 weeks before first delivery which was a huge relief and let us focus on farming. Harvie is worth every penny for marketing alone, let alone the efficiencies in managing members. It is saving me a ton of time.” She said that “Harvie sells itself” to members.

From Bart at Falcon Ridge Farm, “We completed our 10 week spring season back in June and are now nearing the end of our summer season.  Memberships are definitely up.  Last year for the summer season we were packing on average about 100 boxes per week.  This season we are averaging about 175.  So I am pleased with the growth.”

Heritage Family Gardens, “We are SOLD OUT for our 2018 summer season!”

Jade Family Farm, “I’ve exceeded my membership goals for the season…”

Looking at the numbers, between 2017 and 2018, the average farm increased their sales on Harvie by 235%. Part of this is huge growth number is due to farms bringing more of their existing business to Harvie, but every farm using Harvie increased sales by a minimum 20% between 2017 and 2018.

So how did this happen?

Two factors:

1) A more attractive program for members. It turns out, if you give people what they are asking for, they will pull out their credit card and buy. For example, custom shares, vacation holds, flexible share costs, payment plans, etc.

2) Increased marketing: Harvie is not just a piece of software, it is also a marketing service for the farmers. It’s like having a full time marketing staff behind your farm.

As I’ve said before, I think a major blind spot to grow CSA / farm share is that we don’t spend enough time and money on marketing. Harvie is giving farms a viable way to invest in marketing.

Also check out:

“The Albatross of Vegetables”

[Also in this series: “We sold out 7 weeks before first delivery…”, Here’s how I help market farms ,“You’re Really Going to Pay That?” or How I’m Going to Make your Farm More Profitable ]

Dear Farmers and Supporters,

The blunt truth is that CSA has a negative reputation in the marketplace. For example, there is this cartoon that calls a CSA membership the “albatross of vegetables”:

Image

Ouch.

There was a vigorous discussion in our CSA Farmer Discussion group on Facebook when, in an article in the Chicage Tribune about the challenges faced by farmers competing with businesses selling “Imperfect Produce”, CSA was disparaged as a way for farmers to get rid of ugly produce saying,

“For years, farmers have been selling imperfect produce in boxes. It’s a practice known as community supported agriculture, or CSA…”

We’ve been customer unfriendly in general and it has led to this negative perception of CSA, especially now that there are many more opportunities for consumers to buy food they feel good about, resulting in declining membership numbers for many CSA farms. For an entry point into my thinking on this topic read “CSA: We Have a Path Forward”.

So “CSA is dead”? (This is a phrase I’ve heard from many long-time CSA farmers over the past few years).

Yes and no.

The old CSA where farms could pack a box full of whatever came off the farm, not worry about customer vacations, accept full payment up front, etc is dead, except for a few farms that have been able to build out that community and sustain it. In my experience, those farms are few and far between.

However, consumers still yearn for high-quality food from a local farmer they know and trust.

I’ve found through developing Harvie, when we listen to the concerns of members, when we learn why they have not joined, when we build a robust marketing and communication program, they will join and stay.

I can say this empirically now because I have retention rate data from farms before Harvie and now year-over-year retention data for farms using Harvie.

The farms that have adopted Harvie have seen a 15-30% increase in retention rate.

Retention rate has been my key metric for many years as I’ve thought about how to improve CSA programs. To see this number increase so substantially validates that I’ve been on the right track for the last four years. That is essentially what Harvie is: I’ve taken all my customer research and built a platform to fit the needs of the consumer while still retaining what is special about CSA.

I hate to use cliched terms like “game changer”, but this is a game changer for CSA.

Beyond being a true representation of member happiness, having higher retention rates makes it easier to grow or maintain membership and reduces marketing and customer acquisition costs because it is much more expensive to find a new customer than to retain an existing customer.

So, no more “albatross of vegetables”. There is so much room to grow our market. My analysis estimated 0.4% of U.S. households were in CSA programs in 2015. I still believe we can grow that to 5% over the next few years.

Also check out:

A Vision for 5 Million CSA Members by 2030

By Simon Huntley

Originally published on the Small Farm Central blog on 02/17/2017 

I have been doing a lot of thinking about the future of CSA farms over the past few years. With CSA Day 2017 upon us, I wanted to take time to reflect on where we are, where we are going, and why we are doing this.

I am passionate about CSA farming because I see the special connection between farmers and eaters, but also see a path to an economically sustainable small-to-medium scale farm. I believe that economic sustainability is tied extricably to agricultural sustainability and that CSA is an important part of that puzzle because it allows a farmer to control his or her market with a degree of certainty and margin that no other marketing channel allow.

In addition, CSA is the most direct connection that an eater can have with his or her farmer and is a connection to the land that an eater can’t get in any other way. Through CSA, we imbue food with meaning, story, and connection. In a world of intractable problems, being a CSA farmer or CSA member is an act we can take to make life better for our land, economy, and community as a whole.

The CSA Market Right Now

However, CSA only touches a tiny minority of households. I was focused on this fact through the Local Food Marketing Practice Survey that was released in December by the USDA (hat tip to Elizabeth Henderson for emailing the data to me). This data is for the United States only, but I think the lessons can be applied anywhere in the world.

They list the total sales of all 7,398 CSA farms at $226,000,000 in 2015. In a lot of ways, I look at that data and think CSA has been a huge success in 30 seasons in the United States. This is a concept that has resonated with the public without any corporate, governmental, or moneyed interests behind it.

On the other hand, let’s look at that data in terms of the overall food marketplace.

If we take the average share price data from our CSA Farming Report of $450, then we get the number of approximately 500,000 CSA shares sold in 2015.

There are 124.6 million households in the U.S., so that means approximately 0.4% of US households purchase a CSA share each year.

So, despite the huge success of the CSA concept, it is still very niche. Looking at these numbers, I can’t believe that 0.4% is the ceiling of CSA.

I think CSA farming is so important for farmers and eaters, so I am setting a goal of growing the overall CSA market by 10x, to 5 million households, by 2030.

Even with this exponential growth of CSA, we will still be serving only 1 in 25 households in the United States. That is still a small slice of the population and I believe that is possible for us to get there.

However, what got us to 500,000 CSA members, will not get us to 5 million. We need to reimagine what CSA is to appeal to a much wider demographic and we need to get better at articulating the values of CSA. Your customers and potential customers work hard for their money too, so we must appeal to their values and their interests as we plot a way forward.

While we reimagine CSA, we can’t lose sight of what has made CSA such an impactful concept. I believe that if we simply compete with the grocery stores or the Blue Aprons of the world, we lose. CSA must be about more than a simple box of food.

What will this growth of the CSA market mean for your farm? What will this growth mean for the overall local food market? How do we get there?

I ask these questions, but I don’t have the answers. I have some guesses. However, I believe that reaching this goal it is possible if we all work together on the local, regional, national, and international scale. I want to start the conversation with you because I believe that this growth is essential for a thriving local food economy and, I worry that if don’t radically grow CSA, it will become more niche and eventually wither on the vine.

I firmly believe that when we all do better, we all do better. Your success is my success.

I would love to hear from you: how do you feel about this goal? Is it reasonable? Do you have ideas on how we can get there?

I can be reached at simon@smallfarmcentral.com. We can continue the discussion on the CSA Farmer Discussion group on Facebook (request access here), at winter conferences, and in the fields.

I look forward to growing with you over the next 13 years!

Interested in getting useful information for your CSA sent to your inbox? Click here to get access to the CSA Solutions Hub.

 

Let’s talk business

By Simon Huntley

Originally published on the Small Farm Central blog on 05/24/2017 

In every business, there is some “customer acquisition cost” (CAC from now on) — in other words, how much do you spend to acquire a single customer?

In my experience, for most CSA farmers this number is close to zero and not something you think about.

Even if you are not spending money on traditional advertisements, there are costs to find new customers. There is a website hosting fee, staff or personal time to develop content for the website, Facebook boosted posts, email marketing software like MailChimp, time spent developing content for email marketing, and on and on. So even at a basic level, if you think your cost of customer acquisition is $0, it is not.

I asked farmers on the CSA Farmer Discussion group on Facebook about their CAC and answers ranged from up to $100 to as low as $2.

Here is where it becomes a major blind spot and perhaps a systemic problem within the CSA movement/industry. The meal kit companies like Blue Apron, food hubs, and grocery stores have the economies of scale, the marketing expertise, and cash to spend $100s to acquire a single customer. So they can spend money on Facebook ads, Google Adwords, direct mail and whatever they can figure out to acquire a cost at less than their target CAC.

So if they are able to do this, they take the air out of the room from a marketing perspective and it does start to pull people away from CSAs and towards programs that have better marketing reach. If Blue Apron spends $100 to acquire a customer and the average CSA spends $3 to acquire a customer, that means on average that a potential customer is going to hear about Blue Apron 33 times for every one time they hear about the CSA! Can you blame them for choosing Blue Apron? They almost don’t have a choice!

It is certainly not getting easier. In the early 2000s, a farm could just show up and tack a CSA sign on their website, get some good press, and fill up their membership. People were actively going out and looking to join a CSA farm in these years, so it was relatively easy to find new customers. In this new landscape, where there is a lot of competition from all angles, I believe that we need to get better at marketing in general and starting to think about CAC and the types of channels you can use to reliably generate new customers at a profit will be important.

This is one of the trade-offs in using direct-to-consumer farm marketing: if you sell wholesale or through a food hub, they take care of finding the customers and you will get a lower percentage of the retail dollar. In a CSA, you are getting close to 100% of the retail dollar, but you need to go out and find those customers and finding customers is not free!

Acquisition cost also needs to be paired with your retention rate and the lifetime value of your customer. So if your retention rate is very low, then you cannot afford to spend as much to acquire each customer because you will not be able to spread that cost over multiple seasons. So acquisition cost and retention are intertwined in this way.

I have seen a couple rules of thumb in the larger business world that may help us to think about CAC in the CSA context. One rule of thumb is that a business wants to see CAC paid back within a year of the initial sale, so in the context of a CSA, if your average yearly spend per customer is $500 and you have a gross profit margin (minus marketing spend) on that of 20% then your aim should be to get CAC to be below $100. Assuming you have a fairly good retention rate (>60%), over the long term this will pay back well for you, although you will need to do some more calculations with your own numbers to make this analysis work for your situation.

There are many ways to view this, but the rule of thumb that I am thinking about is to look for a CAC that does not exceed 10% of the first season that the member is with your farm. For example, if your average price is $500/season then a CAC of $50 should be profitable over the long term.

In some ways, I hate to be the guy injecting all of this business terminology into CSA because these are such high-ideals business. However, I think there is a lot to learn from the wider business world that we can apply to CSA programs so you have the freedom to go out and develop your business to impact more people while building a business that supports your family.

In the end, it is all about the goals you have for your farm business. Are you getting the CSA membership numbers you want? What is your most profitable marketing channel? If dealing with these kinds of issues like customer acquisition is not in your skill set, you may need to hire someone with these skills, delegate, or consider pursuing other marketing channels like wholesale that don’t require this kind of work.

How do you think about customer acquisition cost within your CSA? How much are you willing to spend to acquire one customer?

In your corner,

Simon Huntley

Will Blue Apron (and other meal kit delivery) replace CSA farms?

By Simon Huntley

Originally published on the Small Farm Central blog on 07/26/2016

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is under pressure throughout the marketplace. When I started working on CSA farms in 2005, in many areas of the country there were few options to buy from local farmers besides farmers markets.

In the intervening 10+ years, the market has changed.

We have Whole Foods, grocery cooperatives, farmers markets every day of the week (9000+ now!), food delivery concepts and much more. The plethora of options is changing the way eaters think about joining a CSA farm and their expectations. If CSA does not work for them, there are a lot of more flexible options out there that may work better for them. There is even a lot of confusion about what CSA is and what CSA is not.

We cannot stick our heads in the sand and pretend that nothing is changing. The CSA model has evolved since it came to the United States in the early 1980s and we’ll need to continue to change to stay relevant. I’ll write more about the future of CSA in the near future.

One of the new concepts that has taken inspiration from CSA are the meal delivery services that deliver pre-apportioned recipes ingredients to your door step. It’s a meal in a box. One of the biggest of these services is called Blue Apron.

Earlier this summer, I signed up for Blue Apron to learn from their model and figure out how we can use their success to improve the CSA model.

One estimate is that 3% of the US population has tried a meal delivery kit service. From the numbers that I see, that is likely higher than the proportion of the US population that has tried CSA.

Blue Apron’s tagline is a “better way to cook”. It has many competitors including Green Chef (https://greenchef.com/home) “deliciously simple”, The Purple Carrot (a vegan concept) https://thepurplecarrot.com, Freshology “Inspired. Healthy. Living.” https://www.freshology.com. There are many others.

Signing up for Blue Apron

I was impressed by the website experience: you sign up for a weekly plan that will auto-bill each week but you can pause deliveries as long as you remember to pause by the right day. I signed up for a weekly plan for a family of 4 which was probably a bit too much because my young boys (1 and 5 years old) don’t eat as much as an adult or teenager. There is some choice in the recipes you receive or you can just accept the default. There is no vegetarian option.

It is not cheap. My plan cost $69.92/week. That is is $8.74 per meal, per person while the average in-home dinner meal costs $4 per person. So this service does not compete with the grocery store: it competes with restaurant eating and it is probably for the higher end of the market. This is not a service for the family with a small grocery budget.

In the welcome email, Blue Apron promises “Fresh, Seasonal Ingredients”, sourcing from local farms (local to whom? This just is not true), and cooking tips and techniques.

Perhaps it is pedantic to focus on their promise of “local farms”, but here is what the email says about the producers:

I hope that Blue Apron is supporting a local farm somewhere, but it is not local to me in Pittsburgh. This kind of casual deception is disturbing and I’m sure most eaters can see right through it, but as true local farms, you must push against these deceptions and tell your story to your customers. This is one of your largest advantages, so make sure you are clear on it with customers!

Cooking with Blue Apron

The Blue Apron box showed up on my doorstep delivered by FedEx on the day that Blue Apron promised. An email is sent on the shipment day to announce the meals that will be delivered so you can plan for the week.

Everything looks great when it comes to the doorstep: the box is beautiful with huge ice packs at the bottom of the box. Everything comes in pre-apportioned ingredient packs. For example, 2 ounces of butter in a clamshell container. One of my first thoughts is how wasteful all of this is: the home delivery, the cardboard box that I will throw away, the ice packs, and the tiny containers of cheese. It is hard to imagine dealing with this amount of waste on a weekly basis.

However, it is impressive in a lot of ways. It totally takes the thought out of cooking. Blue Apron provides glossy recipe sheets that describe in detail how to cook each dish. I think we can learn from this in our CSA farms: people don’t know how to cook and there is value in completely spelling it out for them! They are clearly willing to pay more to lose some of the stress of figuring out what to cook and how to cook it.

Here is an example of the recipe cards:

The recipes are not super simple. They take some time to put together. I found in the recipes that my wife and I made, it took about an hour to get food on the table.

I’m a pretty good cook. Ever since my first experience in college of living on my own, when I realized that all I knew how to make was pasta, I have gradually built up my skills in the kitchen. However, one thing I noticed about Blue Apron is that since everything was so spelled out on the cards it made me stupid: I put a whole head of garlic in a small amount of salad dressing which overwhelmed the whole salad and ruined it with way too much raw garlic. And I like garlic.

In hindsight, that was obvious, but since the recipes cards did not exactly spell out the amount of garlic to use, I just put the full head of garlic. So I’m not sure if these meal kits actually help people learn to cook on the fly like a CSA member needs to know how to cook: to look at the ingredients available and put together something that works.

However, the meals were delicious. The quality of produce was outstanding. It took a lot of the thinking out of deciding on meals for the week and shopping for the ingredients. It is hard for me to see someone doing this in the long term, week-after-week based on the waste and the cost so I see long term retention as difficult for these services, but it is a really fun and easy way to cook new dishes.

Do Meal Kits Compete with CSA?

Yes, I think they do. They are changing the expectations that members have for food delivered in a box. There is zero food waste — everything is used in the recipes you are given.

Wasted food in a CSA is a huge problem. It makes members feel bad and they decide to go with more flexible options like farmers markets in the future. So I think the cooking education part of CSA is huge. We need to make sure our members are successful with their boxes and that is not easy!

The produce from Blue Apron is of impeccable quality. If a CSA member gets less than the best quality food in their boxes, they will go elsewhere. To compete over the long term, the product in a CSA box needs to look at least as good as the product in Whole Foods or in a Blue Apron box.

However, on your side as a CSA grower is the story and connection that you have to your customers. I think if we try to compete with the Blue Aprons and the Whole Foods of the world, as small, independent producers we will always lose over the long term.

CSAs need to become more customer centric to react to a changing marketplace — we are not the only game in town any more! — but we also need to be mindful not to lose what has made CSA so successful.

The magic and the way forward will be found in balancing those opposing forces.

I’ve been diving deep into this problem, spending time with the research and with CSA members to better understand their experience. Look for more on this topic in the near future!

I would love your feedback. What kinds of competition are you seeing in your local area?

Join Our Team: Support Specialist

Harvie (http://harvie.farm) connects local consumers with local farmers who deliver shares of farm fresh products customized to their personal preferences.

The company behind Harvie is called Small Farm Central and was started in 2006 to meet the technology and marketing needs of local farmers across the US, Canada, and internationally and has served 1000s of farms in the last 12 years. Harvie was introduced in late 2016 to address the changing landscape of food buying and to help farmers grow sales and profit by making local food more accessible through a customer friendly CSA / farm share model. The concept has grown rapidly. In 2018, Harvie will help 35 farmers deliver over 100,000 shares with much more growth in 2019 and beyond.

To keep up with growth, the Harvie Team is hiring two Harvie Support Specialists.

The Harvie Support Specialists work as the front line of customer support for both assisting our partner farms as well as their customers.  Support requests come in through several channels, primarily email, but also phone and online chat. Support for our partner farms includes everything from setting up new accounts to training farm employees on software features to everyday problem solving.  Supporting our farmers’ end users often involves more mundane tasks such as helping them get signed up, scheduling vacations, billing questions and other account management issues.

As with any small company, this position will be multidisciplinary and will occasionally include work involving other aspects of the company including marketing, product development and testing.  

This is an exciting opportunity for independent, self-starting individuals who are ready to grow with Harvie.

Important details:

Full-time position with some flexibility (32-40 hours/week)

Competitive salary adjusted upward with experience

Health benefits, retirement plan, and paid vacation

Harvie farm share paid for by the company and delivered to the office by Rivendale Farms!

Office on North Shore of Pittsburgh, 10 minute walk from downtown, free parking

Relaxed dress code and office environment

Regular weekday schedule with some regular weekend coverage required

Equal Opportunity Employer

Requirements:

Highly organized to manage multiple goals simultaneously

Puzzle-solving — deductive ability to get to root causes of problems

Comfort with friendly phone support — support is unscripted and requests are often unique

Ability to explain technical concepts in a non-technical manner

Comfortable running demos and speaking on the phone

Ability to write courteous, friendly, and clear support emails

Ability to learn or have experience with web-based utilities such as Google Suite (Gmail, Google Docs, Hangouts, Google Sheets), Zendesk, Atlassian Suite, Slack, and Skype

Apply

Send resume and cover letter in PDF format to qroth@harvie.farm with subject line “Work at Harvie”.

Join Our Team: Harvie Graphic Designer Position

Harvie (http://harvie.farm) connects local consumers with local farmers who deliver shares of farm fresh products customized to their personal preferences.

The company behind Harvie is called Small Farm Central and was started in 2006 to meet the technology and marketing needs of local farmers across the US, Canada, and internationally and has served 1000s of farms in the last 12 years. Harvie was introduced in late 2016 to address the changing landscape of food buying and to help farmers grow sales and profit by making local food more accessible through a customer friendly CSA / farm share model. The concept has grown rapidly. In 2018, Harvie will help 35 farmers deliver over 100,000 shares with much more growth in 2019 and beyond.

Harvie is seeking a part time graphic designer to work closely with the community manager to create:

Harvie brand guidelines

Harvie brand identity

Marketing materials for all Harvie farms to include social campaign images, brochures, posters, postcards, etc.

Marketing materials for Harvie to include social campaign images, email campaign images, blog images, farmer resource, videos, member resources, etc.

Other design tasks as projects come up

Required

Experience with creating brand identities

Experience working with food and/or farm type businesses

Other Details

This position will be a contracted, part time position with hours ranging from 10-25 per week with seasonal fluctuation.

This position has the chance to grow into a full time staff position as the needs of our business grows and evolves.

Office on North Shore of Pittsburgh, 10 minute walk from downtown, free parking

Relaxed dress code and office environment.

Open to remote working location.

Ability to collaborate with other team members in real time on projects.

Strong interest in local farming, agriculture and/or cooking.

Ability to learn or have experience with web-based utilities such as Google Suite (Gmail, Hangouts, Google Docs, Google Sheets), and Slack.

To apply, send a PDF resume, hourly rate requirements and portfolio to stefanie@harvie.farm with subject title “Harvie Design Position”.

One Dollar, One Vote

By Simon Huntley

Local farms are an essential part of healthy local economies.

They protect farmland from development, they take care of the environment by responsibly growing on their land, they build a rural lifestyle for farm families and their employees, they preserve local food production, and often build a community around their farm.

However, it’s not a glamorous lifestyle. It’s hard being a local farmer.

There are crops to grow, irrigation to run, hail storms to worry about, bills to pay, payroll, equipment to fix, and on and on. It’s a complex small business.

Local farming is demanding work that has benefits we can all agree on. How can we as consumers support farmers in this work?

Buy directly from your local farmer.

Do you know your farmer’s name? Then you are buying from your local farmer.

Have you visited your farmer and have you seen where the crops you are eating are grown? Then you are buying from your local farmer.

There is certainly a government policy aspect to supporting local farms and I respect the political work that many organizations do on behalf of farms. However, what I see lacking for many of the farms I work with are the sales to justify the investments that need to be made on the farm to compete in the competitive local food marketplace. The tractors that need to be bought, the post-harvest handling facility that needs to be built, the multitude of systems that need to developed on the farm, let alone the marketing expertise that is needed; all of this is expensive!

In a democracy, you get to vote once or twice a year, however with your food choices, you are voting three times a day. One dollar, one vote.

Vote for local farms. Buy farm direct.

It’s up to us in the local farm community to develop better ways for you to access quality local food. We need to make sure that this food is convenient, cost-effective, and high quality. That’s why Harvie exists.

However, at a certain point, we all need to pull out our wallets and vote for local food production if we want these farms to thrive.

Thank you for supporting local farms!