2019-02-08 / Front Page

Frith Farm memberships accessible

By Abigail Worthing Staff Writer


A partnership with the Maine Organic Farmers and Growers Association now allows SNAP recipients to use their funds on a membership to Frith Farm. The membership allows access to fresh produce on a weekly basis during the harvest season. (Courtesy photo) A partnership with the Maine Organic Farmers and Growers Association now allows SNAP recipients to use their funds on a membership to Frith Farm. The membership allows access to fresh produce on a weekly basis during the harvest season. (Courtesy photo) SCARBOROUGH – As it embarks on its ninth season, Frith Farm on Ash Swamp Road encourages those who qualify for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits to use them for a Community Supported

Agriculture membership.

Maine’s Supplemental Assistance Program, referred to as SNAP, is a program funded by the United States Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services to provide economic assistance to those who qualify.

While Frith Farm accepts SNAP for all purchases on the farm, a partnership with Maine Organic Farmers and Growers Association now allows SNAP recipients to use their funds on a membership to the farm. The membership allows access to fresh produce on a weekly basis during the harvest season.

The Frith Farm Community Supported Agriculture program allows families to subscribe to the farm for the 20 weeks of harvest from June to October. Subscribers can choose between a full or half share in the farm and can pick up their shares on Tuesdays or Fridays from noon to 7 p.m.

“The subscriptions help the farm function and provide funding to kick start our season,” said assistant farm manager Sarah Coburn, who joined the Frith Farm team in 2016.

A full share in the farm is $655 if paid in full by March 1, or $680 if paid by June 1, and allows subscribers to choose 12 vegetables upon pickup. A half-share is $435 if paid by March 1 and $450 if paid by June 1 and includes six vegetables. Frith Farm also offers an egg-share option, in which subscribers can receive a dozen eggs at every weekly pickup for $125.

“For most CSA’s the farms deliver the boxes to people’s homes, without the choice of what vegetables they would like,” Coburn said. “We have a selection to choose from, so people can take what they’ll use. If someone wants to use their share for six pounds of carrots, that’s OK.”

Frith Farm currently has 150 families that subscribe to the farm, a number the team hopes to grow as more people become aware of the opportunity presented by using SNAP benefits for a subscription.

“It’s about helping the community. We want everyone to have access to fresh produce,” Coburn said.

According to the USDA, SNAP is the largest program in the domestic hunger safety net. Maine Harvest Bucks also works with SNAP to encourage those receiving assistance to use their resources to buy more fresh food.

When a shopper uses their SNAP or EBT card at a participating farmers market, they receive an additional Harvest Buck to use at the same time, effectively allowing for the purchase of twice the amount of produce.

The CSA program at Frith Farm has an added bonus to those who subscribe: unlimited pick-your-own fresh herbs and flowers.

“It’s a great way to get people out and exploring the farm,” Coburn said.

Frith Farm was founded by proprietor Daniel Mays in November 2010. Mays, originally from Pennsylvania, grows more than 40 different types of vegetables at the farm, the products of which rotate in the CSA program.

“When we say people can choose six or 12 vegetables, we don’t mean small servings. A vegetable option can be two heads of lettuce, or a pound of potatoes,” Coburn said. “We want people to enjoy what they choose.”

Frith Farm is committed to making the CSA program available to everyone, and encourages bartering and work-for-share arrangements, as well as a sliding scale for anyone who cannot afford to pay full price.

To join the Frith Farm CSA program, visit the farm website at frithfarm.net or email Sarah Coburn at sarah@frithfarm.net.

Staff Writer Abigail Worthing can be reached news@scarboroughleader.com.

Return to top