We’re really excited to join a CSA this summer. Our first CSA delivery won’t be ready for another few weeks and already we can’t wait to taste our seasonal goodies. If you’re not familiar with the concept, here’s a brief overview of the what and why of joining a CSA.
CSA stands for community supported agriculture and is a concept that brings together local farmers with local customers. While specific CSAs vary, customers generally sign up for a weekly or biweekly supply of fresh, seasonal and local fruit and veggies, which may be supplemented by other products like eggs, meat, honey, spices, beer or milk. We’ll be picking up our CSA weekly at a chill local bar here in Brooklyn.
Here are some reasons we’re excited to join a CSA
One of the obvious benefits of joining a CSA is that the food you get doesn’t travel far to get from the farm to your kitchen. This is great news for the eco, heath and community minded among us.
- Better Nutrition. Reduced travel time means that fruits and veggies can spend more time ripening rather than traveling. Studies suggest that fruit and veggies have more nutrients the longer they ripen before being picked. And, because food starts to lose nutritional value the moment it’s harvested, you’ll also get more nutrients if your eat food soon after it’s picked.
- Smaller Carbon Footprint. The less food travels to get to your plate, the less energy is required to get it to you. Shorter travel time also reduces the need for gas, refrigeration, and packaging. All of these things cost money and those savings are passed directly to the farmers you support. We try to do our best to shop locally at the grocery store. But, we hope that joining a CSA eliminates the headache of sorting through various options to see which fruit or veggie is in season and locally sourced.
- Benefit to Farmers. Money spent on locally grown produce stays in the community. Plus, by paying all or some of the costs of joining a CSA up-front, customers provide small, local farmers with much needed financial security and a guaranteed customer base for each season. Farming is a cyclical business. Helping local farmers absorb some of that cyclicality helps to ensure that your community benefits from strong local farms year over year. We’re really stoked to get to know and support our local farmers.
And of course, we’re excited to cook the food we get each week and to experiment with new, seasonal recipes to share with you.
If you’re looking for a CSA to join this summer, have a go over at Local Harvest they have an incredible list of CSAs for everyone to join.