Heroes come in many forms these days. Healthcare workers are at the medical front lines in hospitals and care homes across the country. Food banks run 24 hours to feed miles-long hungry. Then there is the hero who logs 18+ hour days with grit and commitment….the local farmer.
Meet Chris Jagger, farmer/owner of Blue Fox Farm located in the Applegate Valley, a prime growing region in Southern Oregon. In the early days of Oregon’s statewide shutdown, his concern for people going hungry motivated him to launch a weekly CSA program.
Here are Jagger’s thoughts from a Facebook post on what drives him forward.
“Figuring out next week’s home delivery boxes. I never thought we’d be doing a CSA again. There’s so much that goes into it and so many challenges for the farmer. Mostly logistics – Planning. Planting. Delivery. All a challenge logistically – especially on a small scale.
Thankfully technology has advanced considerably since we last ran a CSA-type box program. Now we have smooth running online billing, drag and drop website building, and most importantly free therapy via our other farmer friends we stay in touch with across the globe via messaging and livestreams.
The main reason we’re doing a CSA type program (version 3.2 ????) is because people need real food now more than ever and I feel it’s our job to keep those people safe that want to or have to stay in their homes. And the same goes for those that come to markets, too.
We hang on to the past wanting things to be how we “want” them to be. Needing those things and ways that we want. Or we let go and move forward and do the things that need to be done. Do the things we should be doing. There are so many things that I could be frustrated with right now. But im just keeping myself moving forward. Im not looking back. Nostalgia should be a memory- not a way of living.
These kids of mine. Your kids. Our kids. I’m blazing a path for them. Not because of some cheezy “think of the children kinda bs” but really because thats what stewardship is. Handing it off to the next better than i found it.
All of us farmers are trying to cover these huge gaps in our food systems. Gaps that have developed swiftly and dramatically. Diversified markets for diversified times.”
Customers can purchase a weekly share and add their name to the email notification list on his shop page. Home deliveries are grouped by region to reduce the footprint and coordinate with his restaurant and grocery accounts. Subscribers also have add-on product choices such as Cerberus Coffee and By George fromage, feta and cheese curds.
Blue Fox Farm heats up with hot sauce.
Jagger has been growing his farming operation over the last few years and recently launched a value-added product, Hot Sauce for Everyone, created with his organic, Blue Fox Farm-grown peppers. The sauces are fermented in oak barrels for 12 months and achieve a natural acidity without the use of vinegar stabilizers or chemicals. Hot sauce aficionados will be intrigued by names like Rooster Sauce, Sunshine, Deep Leonard and the smoky and sweet Chocolate Jesus.
Chris Jagger launches IG Live chats.
Last March he initiated a collaboration with Oregon’s Culinary Breeding Network to raise awareness and education about farming in a new world. Tune in for Instagram Live conversations with farmers, breeders, restaurants and other business owners around the country at 9am Pacific – Mondays & Thursdays at @bluefoxfarm and Tuesdays & Fridays at @culinarybreedingnetwork.
Respect and gratitude to Chris for the long days spent “feeding” the mind-body of his community!
Above quote reprinted with permission from Blue Fox Farm.