We are now accepting new members for the 2017 season

Here is the 2017 Forest Hills CSA season information and contract link. Please do sign up and tell your friends.

General Information 

Community Supported Agriculture

We started the spring of 2002. At that time we were the only Community Supported Agriculture group [CSA] in all of Queens. Our vision is to support local food production and consumption and make it accessible to all people. By building both consumer/farmer relationships and community awareness of the benefits and responsibilities of choosing fresh, seasonal, organic food, we are increasing our connection to the earth and each other.  CSA is a relationship of mutual support and commitment between farmers and members who share both the bounty from the land and some of the risks involved in the unpredictability of the harvest.

Members pay for the season before it starts, which enables our farmer to plan for the season, purchase new seed, make equipment repairs, and more. In return for paying for a share and volunteering, CSA members receive a weekly vegetable share of Golden Earthworm Organic Farm‘s harvest. Our members may also buy a fruit share, which is grown through IPM at Briermere Farm, and may also order additional products from the Lewis Waite Farm CSA Extras Program.

All Members Volunteer

Yes. Our CSA is entirely volunteer-run. All core group members pay for their shares, just as everyone else does. Some members volunteer more than the minimum requirement in order to get certain jobs done, and we gratefully appreciate those who do. For the past several years, we have a 6 hour minimum volunteer requirement for all members. In the event that we have fewer than 120 members, we may need to increase the amount of the volunteering requirement.

To clarify, the volunteer requirement is per member unit that shares one vegetable share. Most shares are shared by two or more adults. One adult may perform all the volunteering for their share, or they may split it up however they desire. However, all adults eating the share are responsible for making sure that their share’s volunteering commitment is fulfilled. If you have extenuating circumstances, please email our volunteer co-ordinator at fhcsavolunteers@foresthillscsa.com .

Volunteer Sign-up Process

Forest Hills CSA uses SignUp.com (formerly called VolunteerSpot), an online signup system, to schedule distribution and surplus delivery volunteers and backups. You will receive email with a link to VolunteerSpot to sign up on line. This link is generally sent several weeks before the first distribution. This email, as well as others with information about volunteering, will come from FHCSAvolunteers@foresthillscsa.com so please make sure that you have this address in your address book so it will not end up in your spam folder.

Jobs at distribution site scheduled via VolunteerSpot

Shift supervisor
(only designated supervisors may sign up for this)
3:30pm – 8:30pm special
Early shift (experienced member) 3:30pm – 6:05pm 3 hours
Early shift (new member) 3:30pm – 6:05pm 3 hours
Early shift backup (2 positions) 3:30pm – 6:05pm 1.5 hours
Late shift (experienced member) 5:55pm – 8:30pm 3 hours
Late shift (new member) 5:55pm – 8:30pm 3 hours
Late shift backup (2 positions) 5:55pm – 8:30pm 1.5 hours
Surplus delivery 8:00 pm until delivered 1.5 hours
Surplus delivery backup 8:00 pm until delivered .75 hours
Truck unloading early afternoon, time TBD by GEOF 1 hour


Non-distribution Volunteering

We have several non-distribution jobs. We have several members who have already committed to organizing the volunteering. If we have enough members, we can offer credit for jobs such as blogging on our web site, organizing the Just Food Smackdown, organizing member events, and more. We also welcome members to do these activities without credit. We will discuss non-distribution volunteering at our pre-season meetings.

Just Food

We are a Just Food Network CSA. Just Food is an organization that empowers and supports community leaders to advocate for and increase access to healthy, locally-grown food, especially in underserved NYC neighborhoods. They provide education and resources to CSAs and farmers and others. We donate $3 per member and Golden Earthworm donates $2 per member to Just Food.

If you would like to get on Just Food’s mailing list to receive information about Just Food programs and events, please click here.

CSA Season

The CSA will run for 25 weeks, from May 30th through November 14th, 2016.

Distribution Times

Distribution is on Tuesdays, from 4-8PM.

You may have a friend or relative pick up your share if you can not make it, but all shares not picked up by 8pm will be donated to a charity.

Distribution Location

At the Church-in-the-Gardens, 50 Ascan Avenue in Forest Hills.


Full Paying Certified Organic Vegetable Share: $538 (GEOF receives $538)

Middle Income Certified Organic Vegetable Share: $403.50 (GEOF receives $538)

Low-Income Certified Organic Vegetable Share: $269 (GEOF receives $538)

Conventional Fruit Share: $118 (GEOF receives $118)

Member fee: $10 per contract

This year, we have added just a $10 member fee because we have surplus money from prior years. Our total member fee needs are $25 per contract. Member fees are used to pay for: subsidized shares, meeting room rentals, FreshBooks, PayPal and VolunteerSpot fees, Just Food CSA Network membership, and incidentals. Our farmers also give us one free vegetable share for every 30 shares. We use that money to help pay for subsidized shares.


This year we are accepting payment through PayPal or paper check. Do note they we are only accepting funded PayPal, which is PayPal with payment through a checking account or your PayPal account balance (and not via credit card). Through FreshBooks we are able to use funded PayPal for a discounted fee of 50 cents per transaction, instead of the usual 2.9% plus 30 cents per transaction.

Payment reminders:
  • Do note that we are no longer accepting payments in installments. If you are unable to pay in full now, please email info@foresthillscsa.com today to discuss when you can pay.
  • Please make sure you have sufficient funds in your checking account before you pay. A $30 fee will apply to all returned checks.
  • If your contact information changes, please email info@foresthillscsa.com.


2017 Main Season Shares


Our Vegetable Farm

Our vegetables are grown on Golden Earthworm Organic Farm, which is located in Jamesport, on the North Fork of Long Island. The farm was started in 1996 by Matthew Kurek, a chef turned farmer with a passion for vegetables and for sustainable agriculture. Matthew’s wife, architect/designer Maggie Wood, joined him in 2002. Matthew and Maggie live on the farm with their two sons, Galen and Zinn. Together with a skilled and dedicated farm team, they grow over one hundred varieties of vegetables for over 2,000 CSA member families of Long Island and Queens.

Vegetable Season

Vegetables Shares are distributed every Tuesday for 25 weeks, May 30th through November 14th, 2017.

Vegetables in the share

Produce is picked fresh from the farm fields the day before distribution, boxed up, and delivered to us. This share contains 6 to 10 vegetables each week, depending on the season and availability. The “vegetable” share also includes some watermelon, and possibly also some strawberries, which are organic, as they are grown on Golden Earthworm Organic Farm. The share typically feeds a family of 3-4, but we have anywhere from 1 to 8 members who eat one share. Read newsletterssample shares and the harvest schedule to get a better idea of what’s in each week’s shares. Read vegetables guides and recipes for more on how to store and cook the vegetables that may be in your share.

Golden Earthworm’s Farming Practices

Read more about Golden Earthworm’s farming practices.Golden Earthworm is certified organic through NOFA – NY. They have been farming using organic practices for over 20 years.

Half Shares

We do not offer half shares, but you are welcome to split a share with someone.
If you feel that one share is too much for you or your family, we encourage you to find someone who can split it with you. Our recommendation is for share partners to alternate picking up the full share every other week. If you prefer to divide each week’s share in half, we ask that you do so at home, and have one person pick up the whole share, as we do not have the room to keep half shares at distribution. If you do not know anyone to share with, you are welcome post on our Facebook page to find someone.

For those who are splitting a share, all members who are involved in splitting the share are responsible for the share’s volunteering obligation. Adults splitting a share are jointly responsible for completing all volunteering hours.

Subsidized Shares

Low and middle income shares are given out on an as-needed basis, to the extent that we can afford to subsidize them. Family size and income are calculated by the number of people eating the share (whether or not they are related) and those people’s total pre-tax income from all sources, not just salary. Subsidized shares are are funded by fellow members and are given out on the honor system, although the core group reserves the right to request supporting documents.

Family Size Middle Income Share
Income Less than
Low Income Share
Income less than
1 $32,000 $20,000
2 $44,000 $27,000
3 $55,000 $34,000
4 $66,000 $41,000
5 $77,000 $48,000
6 $88,000 $55,000

Vegetable Share Prices

Full Paying Vegetable Share: $538 (GEOF receives $538)
Middle Income Vegetable Share: $403.50 (GEOF receives $538)
Low-Income Vegetable Share: $269 (GEOF receives $538)


Our Fruit Farm 

Our fruit is grown on Briermere Farm, in Riverhead, on the North Fork of Long Island. A short drive from Golden Earthworm. The McCombe family have been farming that land since the 1960’s. They
are well known for their pies, but we get to enjoy their fruit fresh and make our own pies, if we want.

Fruit Season

Lasts for 18 weeks from July through October.
A Longer Fruit Share is back!  Based on feedback from their survey, our farmers are bringing back a longer fruit share to include berries.  The Briermere Farm fruit share will now run for 18 weeks starting in July with blueberries. 18 weeks of tree fruit (Apples, Pears & Peaches) and Blueberries from Briermere Farm in Riverhead, starting in July.

Fruit in the Share  

Approximate fruit season: 
July – Blueberries
End of July – mid-September: Peaches
September – November: Apples & Pears
It is primarily an Apple, Peach & Pear Share, with a few other varieties of fruit mixed in.


Our fruit share distribution is not a traditional CSA share-of-the-harvest model, but is based on the Spend-Down Method. With the Spend-Down Method, CSA members pay a set amount of money at the beginning of the season. When the fruit starts to come into season (around the first week of July), the fruit farm starts giving a reasonable weekly quantity of fruit. This may be 1 or 2 portions, depending on what’s ripe to harvest. The fruit farmer continues to deliver fruit until the original payment is spent down. This is what Briermere farm prefers. 3-4 lb bag of fruit per week.

Briermere’s Farming Practices  

Briermere Farm practices Integrated Pest Management, in consultation with the Cornell Cooperative Extension. The tree fruit is sprayed with insecticides and fungicides at various points through the season. To reduce the use of chemical insecticides the orchards are close monitored and other pest control measures are used, such as insect pheromone mating disruption. Herbicides are also used to control weeds in the orchards.  Briermere Farm’s own leaf compost is the only fertilizer/nutrient source for their fruit crops. No chemical fertilizer is used.

Fruit Share Price

$118 (We pay GEOF $118)

Fruit-Only Members

We have a limited number of members who only have one or two fruit shares. You are welcome to only sign up for a fruit share, keeping in mind that the $10 member fee is per contract and the 6-hour volunteer requirement applies to fruit-only members, as well.


What it is  

The Lewis Waite Farm CSA Extras program is run by Alan and Nancy Brown, of Lewis Waite Farm. Along with Colin Brown, they raise grass-fed and grass-finished beef and pasture raised, GMO free pork on land that is Certified Organic by NOFA-NY. They partner with a number of other farms and small family-run businesses in upstate New York and Vermont to offer a wide array of products fresh from small farms. You may read more about farms and producers and their farms or operations on their website. Their deliveries are year round, but more frequently in the summer, ranging from once a month to twice a month. Each CSA member may order whatever items they like from their wide range of products. Members can also ask them to pre-select items for them in several share type packages. All FHCSA member will receive regular emails from LWF during the season with ordering information. We do not yet have the 2016 season delivery dates, but when we do, we will notify members.  

LWF Offerings

  • Bread
  • Dairy (milk, cheese and yogurt from cows, goats and sheep)
  • Drinks (coffee, herbal teas, kefir, sparkling cider, and probiotic drinks)
  • Eggs
  • Frozen berries
  • Fish and shellfish
  • Meats (beef, buffalo, chevron, chicken, duck, goose, lamb, mutton, pork, rabbit, and turkey)
  • Pantry items (apple sauce, dried beans, chutney, dried grains, energy bars, fresh ground flour, granola, herbal infusions and syrups, honey, jams and spreads, maple syrup, trail mix, mushroom products)

Lewis Waite Farm Network-Only Members

We have a limited number of members who only order from LWFN and do not get vegetable or fruit shares. You are welcome to only sign up for LWF ordering, keeping in mind that the $10 member fee is per contract and the 6-hour volunteer requirement applies to LWFN-only members, as well. If you only want to order from LWFN complete the contract with your contact information, checking off no vegetable share, no fruit share, and checking that you commit to volunteering, to paying the member fee and read the Member Agreement and commit to it. We have a limit of 5 LWFN-only members due to space constraints.

Membership Agreement

I commit to membership in the Forest Hills Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Program for the 2017 harvest season, which lasts for 25 weeks.

The Shares

  • I agree that while Golden Earthworm Organic Farm and Briermere Farm will act in good faith to provide fresh produce, there is no guarantee of quantities or contents of shares. I understand and accept that I share both the risks and the benefits of the harvest, and as such, can not be guaranteed any specific vegetable or fruit as part of my share.
  • I understand that all vegetable boxes delivered in a given week are the same, or as close to the same as possible.

Member Responsibilities

  •  I understand that it is my responsibility to attend one of the pre-season meetings, and to read the Members’ Handbook in its entirety before the season begins, so that I understand how distribution and the CSA works. The dates of the meetings will be emailed some time in April, along with the Members’ Handbook.
  • I understand that this is a community project and, as such, I agree to fulfill the minimum volunteering requirement for the CSA set by the Core Group (which will be at least 6 hours or may be more, as decided by the core group), working at the distribution site or the equivalent, as approved by the Core Group. If I do not fulfill my volunteer commitment, in the future I will not be eligible for FHCSA membership.  If I choose non-distribution volunteering, I will make a detailed proposal to the core group with-in one week of the pre-season meetings.  If you I not do so, I understand that it will be assumed that I wish to volunteer at the distribution site and can make the scheduled times.
  • I understand that it is my responsibility to sign up for volunteer slots on VolunteerSpot or arrange for other approved duties; otherwise, in the future I will no longer be eligible for FHCSA membership. Non-distribution volunteers must have made a detailed proposal to the core group with-in one week of the pre-season meetings. If you do not do so, it is assumed that you wish to volunteer at the distribution site and can make the scheduled times.
  • I understand that if I split a share, one member needs to pick up the whole share (half of a share can not be kept at distribution) and that volunteering requirements are the responsibility of all adult members who split a share.
  • I understand that if I do not pick up my share during distribution it will be donated appropriately; I do not expect to have my share saved.
  • I agree to keep my membership account information up to date and to promptly notify info@foresthillscsa.com of any changes.
  • I understand that the CSA’s primary means of communication is via email, and I will read FHCSA emails and respond appropriately.
  • If I sign up for a low or middle income share, my family truthfully meets the income guidelines.
  • I understand that I am only a member once my full payment is received.

Payments, Refunds & Cancellations

  • Requests for refunds by a member prior to the first day of the CSA harvest season will be issued a full refund less a $15.00 administrative processing fee.
  • Cancellation by the farm during this period will dictate a full refund to the member for the share price paid.
  • From the first day of the CSA harvest season on, we can not refund your share as we have already paid our farmers and we are counting on your volunteering. The Core Group will try to help you find someone from our wait-list who would buy your share. However, it is ultimately your responsibility to sell your share, if you desire, and to notify the Core Group of the new CSA member(s).
  • Cancellation by the farm during the season will dictate a pro-rated refund to the member for the remaining weeks of unclaimed produce.
  • A $30.00 fee will apply to all returned checks.

Contract Link

Please click here to go to our contract.

If you have any questions, you are welcome to email info@foresthillscsa.com or call Marina at (718) 459-1037.

We hope you will join us!

Marina, Elaine and Tom
The Forest Hills CSA Core Group

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