If you enjoy local food, you’ll love our Food Box Program! Designed to provide you with a variety of fresh produce every other week, we bring locally-grown food directly to your community or workplace.
We source our food box items from several producers in a six county region (Mahaska, Keokuk, Wapello, Jefferson, Davis and Van Buren). This allows us to have a wide variety of produce throughout the season. You can support multiple farming families throughout southeast Iowa without traveling further than your workplace.
“Thank you for this service and being the bridge between local growers and my table.” – 2016 Food Box Customer
We bring the food to you!
With all the fun opportunities that summer has to offer, it seems like a waste to be spending all your time in the grocery store. Our Food Box Program can help you with that. We bring produce directly to you! Several businesses in Wapello County will serve as “drop sites” for our boxes. We bring the shares at the end of the day, packaged, labeled, and ready for you to grab on your way home.
We love to share knowledge!
Our produce comes with a newsletter that has local food information, farmer profiles, and plenty of recipes. We make sure you know what’s in your share of produce by labeling items or including an information sheet. We give you storage and preparation tips, so if you’ve never used one of the items before, you’ll know what to do. The newsletter will also keep you connected with local and regional food events, so you can support the local food network in other ways too.
“[We] have liked everything… and appreciate the info that comes with, especially the recipes.” – 2016 Food Box Customer
We love variety, but we also love the staples!
Our shares typically contain 6-10 different items. We choose to provide smaller quantities of items, with a greater variety overall. We try to include a handful of well-known and well-loved items, along with a few new items. There may be things you’ve never seen or heard of before, and that’s why we provide recipes and tips. But don’t worry about only getting the wacky vegetables in your share, you’ll see plenty of your favorites too.
“It got my kids excited about ‘opening’ the delivery and trying new veggies. I like that it included fruits and veggies, and a recipe for everything so there was less excuse not to try something.” – 2016 Food Box Customer
You can customize your deliveries!
We will have up to 10 deliveries this year, scheduled for every other week. You can sign up for all of them, or pick ones that work best for your family. If you’re on vacation one week, you can skip that week without having to pay for it.
You don’t have to pay up front!
Why pay for food you haven’t received yet? We know that everyone has a budget and unexpected expenses happen. We are able to accept payments for the entire season or you can pay monthly as you go. You choose what works best for you and your family.
“The best part about participating in it was it gave me a reason to try new vegetables. For example, kale is all the rage but I didn’t want to buy it and learn I didn’t like it and feel like I wasted money. With the bag, I already paid for it so I might as well try it. I LOVED it in the salsa recipe and my husband really liked it as a chip substitute. It was fun to cook again in the kitchen with the new items.” – 2017 Food Box Customer
Cost: $20 per box
Payment: cash, check or credit card
Locations: pick-up at Wapello County Extension Office (click here to find us on a map). Employees of the following businesses can pick up at their workplace – John Deere Ottumwa Work, Indian Hills CC Main Campus, Sieda Community Action Admin Office, and River Hills Clinic Building
Dates: every other Wednesday, June 13th through October 3rd
Times: Pick up at our office between 2pm and 4:30pm, or pick up at worksites after 4pm (exact times are TBD)
Ready to sign up now? REGISTER HERE
What is in a box and how much of it?
Each box contains 6-10 different items and enough of each item to feed 2-4 people. The produce is seasonal and includes vegetables, herbs and occasionally fruit or a specialty item. We also include a newsletter in each box with helpful information such as storage tips and recipes. Here are examples of some foods that you might find in your box during that season. These are not complete lists and items are always subject to availability!
Am I getting my money’s worth?
This is a non-profit program and our operating costs are covered by a Local Food Promotion Project grant. This means that all of the money you spend on a box is being used to buy the box and the food that is in it! Plus, we buy the produce at wholesale prices and are able to directly pass those saving on to you. Not to mention that you are getting produce that is more fresh, flavorful, and nutrient-dense than you could find in the grocery store, while supporting local businesses. Win-win!
“I wasn’t sure what to expect when I signed up, but was overly pleased with the quality, quantity, and variety that was in each box. It was all neatly labeled and clean. Thank you very much!!!” – 2016 Food Box Customer
Will I know what is in my box ahead of time?
Nope, it is a surprise for all of us! Because we are sourcing local foods and subject to all kinds of unpredictable situations, even our organizers don’t know what will be in the boxes until a day or two before it arrives.
Can I choose what is in my box?
No. Each box is packed with the same goodies. The majority of the items are popular and familiar, along with one or two less common items that are new to most people. We promise we won’t give you a box with only turnips, eggplants, beets and kale!
What if I order a box but cannot pick it up?
You have a few options. You may cancel an order at any time (refund available up to two weeks prior to delivery date). You can have another eligible individual pick up your box at your location. You can call our office and have your box donated to a local family in need.
I changed my mind. Can I get a refund?
At this time, we cannot refund any money within two weeks of a scheduled delivery. Call our office to cancel a delivery and get a refund at least two weeks before the day that you want to cancel. Credit card payments will be refunded minus the transaction fee (about $0.65 per box). If it is within two weeks of the delivery date, you can have another eligible individual pick up your box at your location or call our office and have your box donated to a local family in need.
Now that you know all about our Food Box program, we’re sure you’ll want to sign up! REGISTER HERE
Want more information, or to sign up over the phone? Contact Erin Sellman at firstname.lastname@example.org or 641-682-5491.
Keep up with the latest news about the program by liking our Facebook page!