Where to buy organic apples, pears, peaches
I've got a baby who loves fruit, so I'm looking for where to buy my late summer and fall fruits, near Waltham. I'm thinking local when possible and definitely organic for these fruits-- and I know some orchards for apples and pears but not who is growing organic. I get a lot of fruit for him at TJ's but I'd rather a local option for the coming period. I used to buy fruit at Russo's but they don't seem to carry organics (nor give signage telling me where it was grown)....
Suggestions for farmer's markets/orchards/farm stands/stores where I can get my hopefully fairly-priced yummy organic local fruit?
Sorry if it's a repeat, I did a search but some days my personal search function feels, well, not so productive.
Talk to the farmers at your nearby farmer's market. They may not be labeled organic but many of them , while not certified organic, either use no or little pesticides. If you want actual organic though Whole Foods seems to have a reliably steady supply of certified organic fruits.
Carlson Orchards, in Harvard MA, supplies organic cider to Whole Foods, so some of their crop must be organic. I usually get their cider at Roche Bros. or Lucci's, and that is not marked organic. The time I picked it up at WFM I didn't notice the organic label till I got home. They have peaches, nectarines, and blueberries in the fall - I don't know the production particulars.
It's difficult, and therefore expensive, to grow organic orchard fruit -- apples and peaches are beset by many pests and diseases. There are a few out there, though, such as
"Old Frog Pond Farm
38 Eldridge Road
Pick your own certified organic apples and rasberries.Open late August through Columbus Day. Please check our website for farm hours."
For buying in stores, Harvest Coop and Whole Foods are probably your best bet.
Organic cider is easier because the blemished apples are crushed, not sold whole.
Thanks for the replies so far. I like poptart's point as well-- and to that end, recommendations on farms/orchards using little or no spraying/pesticides would also be great! And favorite pear orchards, so I can ask about their particulars...
Any specific farmer's markets you've had good luck with, poptart?
I don't have a car so my farmer's market experience may not be in areas most near you, I tend to hit Davis Sq, Arlington, Copley and Brookline, mostly Davis and Arlington.
Brookline is my favorite, if you haven't been it's a lot of fun and your son would enjoy all the sights as well! It's worth going, especially at this time of year. because they have so many good things in addition to great produce (cheeses, Clear Flour Bakery, turkey, meat, etc)
for organic veggies I like:
Middle Earth Farm (Brookline and Newton, his veggies are the best and a really nice guy)
Blue Heron Farm (Davis Sq)
Enterprise (Brookline, Davis Sq)
Grateful Farm (Arlington)
For fruit, I haven't seen "certified organic" growers, but Kimball Fruit Farm
advertises "low Spray" as does Nicewicz. Both are at all the markets I have been to.
I seem to remember that Marino Lookout Farm ("you pick") was organic. It is under new ownership and I have not been there recently but I think several years ago the whole orchard was organic, and they had asian pears, apples, peaches, nectarines....pricey but good, and very kid-oriented.
Another "you pick" farm that I think uses low-spray methods is Cider Hill Farm in Amesbury, Ma. They have peaches, berries, apples. Another fun place for kids. I just picked some peaches and Ginger Gold apples last weekend!
In talking to some small farmers over recent years, I've heard that the process for receiving "certified organic" is quite a hassle so some of them have opted to not go through the paperwork and expense. They still grow organically, but
don't have the certification.
The good news is that more people are requesting organic or low spray produce, and appreciate locally grown, so hopefully our options for these will continue to grow.
Good luck and let us know what you find!