Farm Box by 409 + Co was started as an effort to help small farmers during the COVID-19 global pandemic. The program was initiated by our Co-Founder, Andreas Winsberg, as he saw his dad - a small pepper farmer - stressing out about what restaurant closures and farmers market shutdowns would do to his business. Andreas decided that our creative agency's next Passion Project would be to help small-medium farmers, like his Dad get through the season. It was clear that there was a market need to support the small farmers and business owners in the SF Bay Area that typically got a portion of their sales from the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market. Also, due to the nature of COVID's risk, older and immuno-compromised people needed a way to safely get fresh, healthy, organic, and in-season produce. It would be too high risk for them to go to the farmers market, so we connected them with the farmers in a safe way that ensured no contact delivery.
Because Andreas had been working on his dad's farm, manning the farmers market booth, and building relationships with other vendors his whole life, he directly knew the people that were being affected by the consequences of the novel coronavirus in this specific context. Andreas' insight into how farmers market works and how people interact with the different nuances of produce and vendors allowed us to promote education programs. From the beginning, Andreas was adamant that we educate our customers about different sizes of farmers, the nature of growing produce, and what organic actually means.
We tested our concept by first running a trial of 20 Seasonal Farm Boxes. We sent a email to Andreas' Dad's email list seeing who would be interested. Right away, we got over a hundred responses of people exclaiming how interested they were in the concept. We launched the first 20 boxes to those who were interested and sold out in thirty minutes. So, we knew there was an interest and demand in the community, and that Saturday we delivered our first boxes. From there, we continued to check in with customers to tailor our offerings, from add-ons to full customization and specialty partnerships.
Pounds of Produce
Donated to our partner, FoodRunners, who delivers fresh produce, food products, and meals to those in need in San Francisco.
Raised for Farmers
Helping farmers create business in difficult climates is our main goal, and we're happy to keep this number growing!
Donated to Our Partners
Every week, we include donation options in our Farm Box orders. So far, we've helped support over six local community organizations!
We're committed to our values
We didn't want to be just another CSA box, we wanted to make sure our business was creating the best outcomes for others as well. We're growing every day, but these are some of the values we're keeping in mind as we expand.
Supporting family-owned and first-generation small businesses ensures we're making the maximum impact for our partners.
Informing our audience about the 'why' behind our efforts is key-- whether it's why we care about organic practices, why we partner with BIPOC-owned businesses, or why we price our products fairly.
Challenging racist assumptions in our own business as well as in the world has helped us keep ourselves accountable and informed better business practices.
Small farms and businesses
Weeks of providing fresh food