Food Box

A worker at MA’O Farms packs vegies--perhaps even your CSA basket.
Image: Weekly Archive Photo

Food Box

Buy a box of produce and stock the chiller for a week

True Community Support Agriculture is a system in which consumers invest in a farm, buying either a non-working or working (farm labor required) share and receiving their return on investment in the form of food. That’s rare here. But many farms offer “subscription boxes,” side-stepping the volume and paperwork of contracting with a distributor and educating consumers about foods they might not otherwise try.

Here’s a brief guide to O’ahu subscription box or bag operations.

Ailani Gardens

Ailani Gardens in Wai’anae offers weekly boxes of 3-5 pounds of fresh produce, herbs for $75 for four weeks (you can try them out for $25 for a single pickup). Pickup Sundays in Kailua, Kapolei or at the farm.

85-1373 Wai’anae Valley Rd., 696-7616 or [349-1077www.ailanigardens.com]

MA’O Organic Fruits & Vegetables

MA’O offers delivery of $32 boxes containing 8-12 different items, all USDA-certified organically grown. Delivery to six different sites weekly or biweekly.

86-210 Puhawai, Wai’ane; 696-5569; http://[maoorganicfarms.org]

Oahu Fresh

Oahu Fresh offers $20 bags of produce, as well as special bags that additionally contain Kuahiwi Ranch meats, Naked Cow Dairy butter, cheese and eggs and, just getting under way, Shinsato Hog Farm pork. Deliveries Wednesdays and Thursdays at various sites. Web site list updated weekly.

Oahu Fresh, 876 Curtis St., 221-9021; [www.oahufresh.com]

Otsuji Farm

Otsuji is pretty much the original food box operation on O’ahu–a three-generation family farm that made it easy on motivated customers by packing up boxes of $10 mixed goods. Cash only, three pickup sites.

Otsuji Farm, 459 Pakala; 368-1135- [www.otsujifarm.com]

Just Add Water

Kimberly Clark has streamlined her all-organic operation with one delivery day, Thursdays, and various pickup and delivery options.

1074 Hele St., Kailua; 259-5635; [www.just-add-water.biz]

Waiuhena Farm (formerly Meleana’s Farm)

Waiuhena, on the North Shore, offers $25 subscription list boxes of organically grown goods; email update sent Friday for Monday pickup. Seasonal add-ons might include items such as guava puree or kombucha tea.

Waiuhena Farm, 59-414 Kamehameha Highway, Hale’iwa; 551-8132; [www.meleanasfarm.com]