Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)

8 Nov

At our local farmer’s market they run what they call a CSA. Individuals sign up for ten weeks and for that duration, receive a pile of locally grown produce each week. Dawn has wanted to check this out for some time and this fall we gave it a shot. Thankfully we had some good friends who live near us who agreed to go in with us to cut the cost in half.

The idea is to support local farmers by providing them with an outlet for their produce. This allows them to compete better with the big boys and we like rooting for the underdog, especially in this case. We also get some amazingly fresh fruits and veggies out of the deal.

The absolute best part is that when you show up, it feels like you are literally getting all this great produce for free. They have boxes of varied items lined up with signs above each. They tell you what the item is (yes, this is very helpful for the occasional veggie you have never seen before) and how many to take.

Gala apples: 5
Acorn squash: 2
Pineapple: 1

I know we paid for all of this at the start of the ten weeks but it feels spectacular to walk in there and fill up your bag with all this great stuff. You also do not have to decide what to get; you just have to decide what to do with it. Instead of “What do you want to eat this week?” it is now “What do you want to do with this hubbard squash?” Thankfully they include recipes for the weirder stuff. Best surprise: a bag of edamame we boiled and and topped with a little salt. Restaurant quality appetizer.

As we get into the colder months, we have started receiving a good bit of squash, greens, and raspberries. We are certainly learning to eat a greater variety of vegetables, crucial for someone like myself who once was and often is still described as the vegetarian who does not like vegetables. In truth, my early days not eating meat meant substituting candy bars and waffle fries. I like to thank I am a little bit past that now.

For instance, at Chick-fil-a, I now pair a salad with my waffle fries.

In conclusion, look around for a CSA near you. If you have the option, I think it is at least worth trying for a season. If you happen to be a vegetarian like us, I suggest it with gusto.

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2 Responses to “Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)”

  1. Julie H. November 8, 2010 at 12:19 pm #

    Shane! Way to steal one of my future posts;)
    Love. love. love that you and Dawn are doing this!
    Rob & I JUST signed up for this with a local farm to start next May. It will be for 19 weeks. I wonder what we’ll do with the turnips?

    • Shane November 8, 2010 at 5:49 pm #

      Glad to hear ya’ll signed up, can’t wait to see what you think. And turnips are easy, just give them away:)

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