Friday, May 1, 2009

What is CSA and what's the big deal?

In all the talk about organic, you may notice the term CSA being thrown around. Another way to stick to an organic lifestyle (and to support the local growing community,) includes buying locally grown, organic products.

CSA, or Community Supported Agriculture, organization is essentially a group of individuals or families that purchase a a share of crops prior to a growing season from a local farmer(s). In return, the farmer(s) will designate a portion or basket from the crop each week to each contributing member. This usually is a mix of whatever fruit or veggie is seasonal. This 'method' can usually end up saving families money and allows for more efficient meal-planning --- most CSA's offer a schedule ahead of time so ya'll know what you're getting. I also love that you get a variety of stuff --- (if you're like me, you tend to get in to a routine picking and preparing the same kinds of veggies every time). This has allowed for some great recipe experimentation/concoctions in our house.

Some CSA communities even offer free delivery...though not every community has this option available and you may have to drive to a drop-off or meeting point to pick up your produce on specific days. However, if you're looking to support farmers in your area and want to ensure a more healthy lifestyle for your family, a CSA group may be the way to go. For more information and to find your local CSA, visit Local Harvest.