If the past sun-drenched weekend was any indication, once the sun starts shining the last thing anyone in this neck-of-the-woods wants to do is spend time inside.
That includes grocery stores, so if you're not interested in shopping or unable, unwilling or uninterested in planting a veggie garden, there's another way to get your hands on fresh, organic vegetables without lifting a finger. InspirEarth - the company that brought natural hot tub treatment solutions to Whistler, has recently expanded to include vegetable and fruit delivery boxes to clients in the Sea to Sky corridor. The boxes will be delivered weekly to clients in Squamish, Pemberton and Whistler and include a mix of whatever crunchy, juicy, healthy goodness the region's soil happened to offer up that week. InspirEarth Acre Farms will contribute produce to the boxes, ensuring a decent, fresh selection and happy local farmers.
"Ninety per cent of produce in our grocery stores in Whistler, Squamish and Pemberton is actually exported from California and Mexico," said Jerry Backer, InspirEarth's operations coordinator. "Sometimes the produce is already frozen, sometimes this produce is 14 days old before they deliver it so it is not very fresh.
"Another thing is we want to support local farmers in Pemberton."
InspireEarth is providing three box sizes for different consumption needs. The small option ($20/week) is designed for solo-eaters. The medium ($30/week) is perfect for twosomes. The large ($50/week) is ideal for families. Doorstep delivery is available for an extra $4, but the produce can otherwise be picked up at designated drop off spots in each town. And if you haven't the foggiest what to do with Hakurei turnips or sunchokes, tips will be included to guide the way.
"We call our boxes inspiration harvest boxes, and that means that every week and every month we want to give people something extra," continued Backer. "Customers will find in the first delivery there will be included natural soap for free that's made in Squamish and is very natural and healthy. There will be lots of recipes as well, so people can learn how to cook these varieties."
InspirEarth isn't the only veggie and fruit box provider around - Ice Cap Organics also offers a pick-up organic veggie and fruit box program and of course, many of the Pemberton growers have roadside honour stalls and a strong presence on the local summer market circuit. In Squamish, Good Times Farming is providing weekly harvest boxes available for pick up on Wednesdays at the Village Green Garden Centre for $25 per box.
As their customer base expands, Backer says InspirEarth is looking forward to working with other farmers in the Pemberton region.
"We are doing this because we want to show people that they should eat local produce from local farmers. Because we deliver this produce fresh - they picked it in the morning and it's delivered the same day so this is the freshest produce people can get and it's also better value than grocery stores offer," continued Backer. "People should buy this produce to support local farmers the best that they can because 90 per cent of the other produce is imported."
InspirEarth guarantees its prices will be less than produce found in the Nesters Market in Whistler. Customers who sign up before June 1 will receive 20 per cent off their first month's order.
For more information about the InspirEarth harvest box options go to www.inspirearthorganics.com or call 604-967-6186. For info on Squamish's Good Time Farming boxes, call 604-815-7179, email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.goodtimefarming.com. For a peek at the goodness grown at Ice Cap Organics, go to http://icecaporganics.blogspot.com or call 604-894-6290.