So we all know that eating fresh fruits and veggies is to the key to health …. as the saying goes if you can’t pick, pluck or kill it you shouldn’t eat it. I dislike that saying but cannot deny the truth in this statement.
Sadly – We live in a world where eating foods like: burgers, fries, pasta, bread, pizza is our new norm and despite some of our best efforts we still find ourselves falling victim to these foods – due to the convenience and/or simply to satisfy our taste buds (or for some of us – our emotions).
Who can blame us … we are busy, tired, sit at desks all days and are more sedentary than ever. As a result of this new way of life more and more people are overweight. According to the CDC obesity is up to 42.4% as of year 2017 and 2018.
I could go more into all of that but we will save that topic for another day – but hopefully that was enough to remind you (and a pep talk for myself) that ya need to eat more vegetables! We know we need to but do we?
Like everything else in life we have to make a conscious effort to incorporate more veggies into our diet. Sure, you could go the grocery store … and stock your fridge. And that is all well and good. But as we all know that vegetables in the store tend to contain GMO’s and sit on the shelf for some time.
So why not get some fresh veggies while the getting is good – the food is fresh, you are supporting your community, can save a little money, help the environment and have an opportunity to feast your eyes on some pretty sceneries while you are it (see photo below – this is the view I see when I exit the farm).
I finally had the opportunity to subscribe to a CSA and recently had my last pick up for the season. Will I do it again? Absolutely.. A CSA is perfect for those who do not have the luxury of growing their own vegetables.
What is a CSA & How does It work
CSA stands for “Community Supported Agriculture” … It is a way that allows farmers an opportunity to offer their produce to the public via an annual subscription fee.
Here is a more detailed picture of what this looks like
- A farm decides to sell their produce via a subscription model
- They sell a share of assorted vegetables for $350 per season (sometimes more or less) – they also offer varying quantities at different price levels
- The seasons in New York state typically run from June – Sept/Oct
- A share represents a couple of pounds (Criteria is set by the farm)
- The farm will offer a pick up date/time weekly or bi-weekly – my pick up date was Thursdays between 2 – 6 pm.
- They package the shares to be ready for pick up day or will set up an assembly line and allow the participants to pick/choose their veggies (this is what my farm did)
- Some farms offer the options to pick some of your own vegetables- so for example – I was able to pick my own berries, flowers and herbs. This was nice because it was a great way to “get the experience” of farming. We also had the freedom to go when we wanted (outside of our pick up dates) for these items.
- Things to note as the buyer:
- There are not many slots available and they book up fast
- The best time of year to book your CSA (In NY) is around Oct – Nov
- Shop around – farms offer different assortments of produce
- The farms will generally give you a listing outlining what will be available week to week
- Build it in to your schedule to have a “clean veggies” night – you will be spending some time to cut and chop when you get home – some must have items to achieve this:
- Plan your meals around the vegetables available – I like to plan my meal weekly and refer to the schedule they provide each week
- Prepare for the winter – Eat half nd freeze the rest
How to learn more about CSA’s
Hopefully this article was enough to convince you to add CSA’s into your way of life. If you would like to learn move visit: https://www.localharvest.org/csa/
This site will provide additional insights and also has a directory available that will allow you to find a CSA in your area.
I will be sharing some recipes in the future .. so be sure to join my email list to keep in touch.