Last year I wrote a post about our family debating joining a CSA or relying on weekly visits to the farmers market. In the end we decided to make weekly farmers market visits, thinking the kids would enjoy helping pick out the produce. Well, that decision ended up being an ultimate fail. We didn’t make it weekly to the farmers market. Most of our local markets run on Saturday mornings. Even in the summers, our Saturday mornings were busy. When we did find time to go, I felt like I spent a lot of money and didn’t have much to show for it.
So, this year, we joined a CSA. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. When you join a CSA, you are purchasing a share (usually weekly) from a local farmer. You pay for the membership upfront (typically $450-$750), to help with the farming costs and then from approximately June through October or early November you pick up your share of produce.
We joined a local CSA farm which offers a Farm-Style Stand choice program. We get to choose what we want from that week’s available produce. The share is supposed to feed a family of four, which we are. The CSA runs 20 weeks from June through October and cost us $700. While the initial monetary output was daunting, it works out to be $30/week for locally grown, organic produce. I am looking forward to cooking with local, fresh ingredients and trying new recipes.
If you are interested in joining a CSA, check out Local Harvest to find one near you. Many membership registrations will be closing soon! And be sure to follow along as we report on and cook with our CSA produce!