As days turn into weeks under the Colorado stay-at-home order and suggestions to wear a mask whenever you leave the house are offered by our Governor, trips to the grocery store feel more ominous. Luckily, Colorado’s Front Range is full of farms and other food suppliers who are ready to feed people. Although local farms are only just starting to fire up their equipment for a summer of growing, there are six spots currently offering pick-up or delivery options for fresh food.
All of these places have guidelines to handle the social distancing requirements — like having customers wait in their car or outside the building until it’s their turn — or else deliver to your home and leave it on your porch (just be sure to leave a cooler outside in the shade for them). And even though there are only a handful delivering fresh produce before the local growing season starts, if you combine a few different options listed below you might not have to go to the store at all.
If you want to continue supporting local farms throughout the year, think about joining a local Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. Check out our other CSA roundup for suggestions about nontraditional farm shares (coffee, dairy, meat for example) and see our list at the bottom for CSA programs that start delivering in May or June.
Where: 3755 Wazee St., Denver – OR – 3610 N. Stone Ave., Colorado Springs
Cost: Various prices, items purchased individually here
The Lowdown: FoodMaven typically sources wholesale priced food for chefs and restaurants, but with the shutdowns prompted by coronavirus concerns, the wholesale supplier has opened its doors to anyone. Check the online marketplace for the available items, like russet potatoes, onions, cheese, frozen or fresh meat and tortillas to name a few. Once you place your order online, there are two locations to pick it up, Monday through Thursday from 12 to 4 p.m.
Where: What Chefs Want, 5151 Bannock St., #12, Denver
Cost: $75 – $150
The Lowdown: Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday you can pick up a pre-designed box from 11 a.m to 2 p.m. Order ahead online to confirm your place and bring an ID and order confirmation number to receive the box. A typical box includes two dozen eggs, local living bibb lettuce, a head of cauliflower, two yellow squash, one spaghetti squash, one red onion, one yellow onion, one bunch parsley, three pounds Brussel sprouts, thyme, five Roma tomatoes, spring mix lettuce, spinach, one bunch of asparagus, family size bag of carrots, five pounds red potato, one bag red grapes and three oranges. Along with the fresh food, the box includes Happy Leaf Kombucha, some Unravel coffee, a spice blend from The Spice Guy and a jumbo roll of toilet paper. There is also an additional add-on for meat for an extra price.
Cost: Various prices, order online here
The Lowdown: The Fresh Guys Produce has been serving Denver since 2007, working with local and regional farms to supply fresh food. They have partnered up with Altamira Foods, a local foodservice distributor, to provide fresh produce for delivery. Altamira also offers a host of other items for delivery, like dairy, eggs, coffee, dried pasta, flour, honey, nuts, fruit and more. Check out all the offerings and order online here.
Where: Delivery to the Denver Metro Area
Cost: $25 weekly, biweekly, monthly or one-time
The Lowdown: Mountain Man Micro Farms is the creation of Andy McArdle. The focus is on microgreens and herbs, all grown with aquaponics. Since the system is highly controlled inside a greenhouse (including the use of fish to filter nutrients) the microgreens are available year-round. Mountain Man offers delivery to residential customers in the Denver Metro area on a weekly, biweekly, monthly or one-time schedule. If you aren’t sure what to do with your microgreens, check out the Mountain Man blog site where there are helpful tips and recipes.
Where: 7972 Hygiene Rd., Hygiene
Cost: Various prices
The Lowdown: If you’re looking for a farmstand open during this in-between time of year, look no further than Aspen Moon Farm. The farmstand hours change weekly, check here, but you can expect to find some good bulk items like cornmeal and flours as well as starter plants for your own vegetable garden. Summer CSA shares for Aspen Moon are also available to purchase now. And if you want to know what you’re getting before you drive to the farmstand, shop online and pick up at the stand.
Where: 3925 E. County Road 32, Fort Collins
Cost: $5 to $30 per bag depending on the type of mushroom and amount
The Lowdown: Hazel Dell mushrooms are kind of a famous brand in the local food scene. Most restaurants who offer fresh produce also offer mushrooms from this Fort Collins farm. During this time, Hazel Dell has started a pop-up mushroom market that is open Monday through Friday from 12 to 4 p.m. — located outside in the fresh air. You can also order dried mushrooms from them online here.
BONUS: Summer CSA Programs
The following farms are offering summer CSA shares that start delivering or offering pick-up in May or June. However, in order to be included in many of these programs, you have to sign up soon as they will sell out. CSA shares are dependent on early registration and payment because the money often goes toward planting and preparing farms for the growing season. They are also limited in number based on how much food a farm expects to produce.
63rd Street Farm: Boulder pick-up, 24 weeks May through November
GoFarm: Golden pick-up, 20 weeks June through October
Grow Girl Organics: Arvada pick-up, 20 weeks June through October
Lora’s Nourishing Produce: Denver Metro Area, Aurora pick-ups
Lost Creek Micro Farm: Lakewood, 17 weeks
Paper Kite Farm: Denver pick-up and local delivery, 20 weeks June through October
Wild Wick’s Farm: Lakewood pick-up, 23 weeks
Front Line Farming: Arvada and Denver pick-up, 16 weeks, late June to early October
BlueTrane Heritage Farm: Denver pick-up, 20 weeks June through October
Ela Family Farms: Denver, Boulder, Golden, Longmont, fruit shares available July through October
Ahava Farm: Denver, Colorado Springs and Peyton pick-up, 14 weeks starting in June
MicroFarms Colorado: Arvada, Lakewood pick-ups, 22 weeks June through October
Jodar Farms: Fort Collins pick-up, meat and eggs only