Does it seem wishful—or even desperate—to think about farm fresh produce in the throes of winter?
Right now, I am finishing up potatoes and carrots from last year’s CSA harvest—and dreaming about the upcoming season. For the uninitiated, CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. This is an arrangement where members subscribe to a local farm for a season and receive a share of the harvest.
Joining a CSA is a great way to begin a healthier lifestyle. It was what started our family on this journey 16 years ago and we have never looked back.
Members join a CSA for the growing season, typically June through November, and a weekly box stocked with seasonal produce is delivered locally, often to a neighbor’s garage. It contains the fruits of the season—greens and radishes in the spring, tomatoes and corn in late summer, squash and cabbage in the fall and of course much more! The farmer makes a livable wage and you get great food along with a jumpstart on a healthier lifestyle.
If you need more convincing, here are 10 reasons to join a CSA:
- You get great, often chemical free, food at a good price
- Your refrigerator is stocked, which means you can’t say you have nothing to eat and need to go out
- Fresh greens are more tempting than canned peas
- You don’t get sidetracked by the online cookie recipes (since the newsletter has healthy ideas)
- You discover delicious new foods that you would have looked scary if they weren’t in your box
- You are committed for the season and more likely to stick with eating well
- You support the local economy and help family farmers earn a livable wage.
- You can take your kids to the farm to see a real, live chicken.
- You may get invited to canning lessons or salsa parties
- Opening a box of beautiful produce is like getting a present—every week!
Right now, most CSAs are getting ready for the new season and signing up members. To find one near you, check out the Local Harvest website.