Whether it’s health or environmental concerns, or some of each, many of us now include at least some amount of organic produce in our diet.
If you happen to live in an urban centre such as Bolton you’re blessed by having a wonderful place like Garden Foods just minutes away with an extensive selection of organic produce. You’ll certainly find me in their produce aisle at least twice a week.
But Caledon is a very big place, close to 700 square kilometers in fact. What if you live in the far-flung reaches, somewhere not so close to an organic supplier? What if you’re a senior or have mobility challenges and getting out especially in the winter months is an issue? Or what if you’re a new mom? Or what if hubby has the family vehicle off to work in Toronto all day?
Enter Organics Live and Nicole Casciato Csinos. Organics Live delivers, weekly or bi-weekly, right to your door. And in quantities that cover a variety of family sizes and purposes, whether it’s your entire supply for the week or to top up what you buy at your local store or Farmer’s Market.
Perhaps best of all, the program is completely flexible. You can choose a small box ($37) one week, a large ($57) the next because company’s coming, and a medium ($47) the next. You can “pause” for any length of time you choose, like 2 weeks while you’re on vacation, or 4 months while you switch back to your local Farmer’s Market for the season. Or even just order the fruit box ($47) if you grow your own veggies. All prices include delivery to your door. No long-term commitment is required; you just need to “pause” when you don’t want delivery.
Nicole, who along with her husband Mark, is the Caledon and Erin franchise holder, is a breast cancer survivor who became very interested in nutrition. “I was very focused on pesticide-reduction, making my body more alkaline and managing stress”, says Nicole.
“I work for a large corporate enterprise, and I became a little nervous when a merger was announced”, Nicole explains. “So Mark and I decided to do something to diversify our income, and we wanted it to reflect our values; to be something we could feel good about. We had our eyes and ears open”.
Soon after that decision Nicole met the Newmarket franchise-holders for Organics Live at the Newmarket Home Show and was very taken with the idea, the products and “what was clearly a carbon-neutral, sustainable company that was trying to help smaller farms commit to becoming certified organic”.
“All Organics Live produce must be 100% certified organic, by an unbiased third party. The majority of our produce comes from Cookstown Greens near Alliston and Pfennings near Guelph. Both farms also act as hubs for smaller organic farms which expands the selection for our customers while enabling us to support many local farms. In the off-season, when produce has to be imported we choose products from the United States and South America through Mike and Mike’s Organics.”
Their client list has now topped 110 and Nicole beams when she talks about her customers who are “absolutely fantastic”! “Our focus is customer service so there’s lots of follow-up. Boxes can even be customized to a degree. We deliver in Caledon on Thursdays between 4:00 and 9:00 p.m. If customers are unsure about whether they will be home they can give instructions on where to leave the box. And of course we bring the box inside for elderly customers.”