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Left Foot Is Closing But Our Mission Lives On!

When Ann Vandemann founded Left Foot Organics in 2001, nobody knew how many lives would be changed or how many seasons the farm would weather.  Over the past twelve years Left Foot has grown from season to season to meet the needs of our customers and community. Our employment program for the disabled was the hallmark of our farm and together with our training program for youth, individuals learned job skills and farming while being paid.  Furthermore, our interaction with the community via volunteer opportunities, market sales and our CSA program, made Left Foot a much-loved organization. And so it is with great regret that the board and staff must now announce the closing of Left Foot Organics as of February 2013.


Farm Manager, Lydia-Beth (right) and community members from Temple Beth Hatfiloh show off the last winter squash harvest.

These are difficult times for many small nonprofits across the country; an ever increasing demand on a shrinking base of philanthropic gifts has caused funding shortages for many organizations.

Although farm production and sales flourished, it wasn’t enough to fund our social programs which require substantial staff and facilities as compared with a for-profit farm.  In addition, much of our equipment and buildings need extensive repair.  LFO simply does not have the capital to meet these and other financial obligations this year.

The Left Foot staff wish to express our collective gratitude to every individual who donated money, resources or time to help fulfill our mission. Left Foot has always enjoyed strong community support.  Over the years, literally thousands of individuals worked side by side with people with developmental disabilities or purchased the produce they grew. Together we learned the importance of sustainable and organic farming in an inclusive environment where everybody was valued. In keeping with the spirit of the organization, we hope that you will carry our mission of inclusion into your own lives.  We encourage you to continue your support of local, organic farming by joining another CSA, buying organic produce and shopping at farmer’s markets.  Although left Foot Organics is closing, it will remain in the hearts of those who worked our fields and shared our vision.  We did a lot of work with a lot of love these past twelve years, but everything must come to an end at some time.  And so Left Foot closes the same way it opened: with gratitude and respect!

Me too

 Hidden in every ending is a new beginning.




Winter CSA? You bet!

Left Foot Organics is pleased to announce our

2012 Winter CSA Program! 

Breezy with a late summer CSA box.

Like many small, sustainable farms across the country, our Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Program plays a crucial role in our farm operations here at Left Foot Organics.  Here is how it works: first you buy a share of the farm’s harvest at the beginning of the season, then each week you receive a box of  produce throughout the fourteen week season.

Buying seasonal, locally-sourced produce is an excellent way to ensure that you are supporting your local economy.  Joining our CSA Program takes that concept one step further by forging a direct relationship between you and our farm without any middlemen. As a member you will receive a weekly newsletter keeping you informed of farm news, which crops are thriving and what you can expect in your box.  You’ll be a part of a community that recognizes the abilities of all people and shares the common values of eating healthily, encouraging local economies, and supporting responsible stewardship of the land.

It is true that there can be a risk associated with joining a CSA program because Mother Nature can influence production and sometimes a specific crop can fail. The reverse, however, is also true; when there is an abundance of healthy crops, your weekly box will reflect that. With warmer and milder than usual weather predicted for our region this winter, we are expecting an excellent growing season! Our Farm Manager, Lydia Beth,  plants a variety of crops and guarantees that you will receive between four and six different vegetables each week. What will you find in your Winter CSA box?

Here’s a sampling of crops we are planning for this season:

Beets         Brussels Sprouts          Cabbage

Celeriac          Chard           Collards          Garlic        

Kale          Leeks       Mustard Greens          Onions         

Parsnips          Potatoes            Rutabagas          Squash

Maybe you are already a Left Foot supporter, maybe you’ve been a member with another local farm and their season is winding down, or perhaps you’ve heard about CSA programs and wanted to give it a try, but are looking for a smaller commitment. Whatever your situation, we are sure you will be pleased with the many options we offer for our Winter CSA Program.

Ready to find out more? Check out our website www.leftfootorganics.org where you can purchase your membership online and download the nitty gritty details like dates and pick up locations.  We have only a limited number of shares available, so don’t delay.

Tumwater Market Opens

The Tumwater Market opens unlike any in America (see above)! Ann, our executive director, is pictured here leading the parade in her pea suit.

Of all that summer brings – the tastes, the smells, the sun, the fun – we are ever so thankful to have our local farmer’s markets reopen and to begin our summer Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) share!  Thank you to everyone who has supported us by buying our food!

CSA Customers this week received Bok Choy, Tat Soi, Spinach, Radishes, Lettuce, Mizuna, and Kale.  If you’ll let us, we will try and fill your home with more goodness – we have a flower CSA share available, an egg share, and because of a new partnership with the Okanogan Producers Marketing Association, we have a fruit share available this year!  A few openings are still available.  You can find an application at our website – www.leftfootorganics.org

The Fun Continues at the Tumwater Market


A Sample CSA Share


Left Foot Bouquets

Micheal, a Grower, Restocking at Market