The dude and I have been working to make some serious lifestyle changes around our house. We want to first start with our bodies and the physical. We want to live more naturally and organically, but still be frugal about it. One of the great ways we can do that in our community is by participating in a CSA Farm Share. For $410.00/year (June-October-ish) we get fresh, organic, locally grown produce! When your dude is vegan, that's amazing!
We started by first doing some research and had some basic questions:
1. What is a Farm Share?
Here are the basics: a farmer offers a certain number of "shares" to the public. Typically the share consists of a box of vegetables, but other farm products may be included. Interested consumers purchase a share (aka a "membership" or a "subscription") and in return receive a box (bag, basket) of seasonal produce each week throughout the farming season. (According to Local Harvest)
2. How will it benefit our health?
Eating organically helps protect us from overexposure to GMOs (genetically modified organisms), helps with our allergies, and supports a clean eating lifestyle. It also encourages us to be social and puts some of that back into our experience with food. For centuries of the human experience, food was a community-based social event with sharing and trade taking place. In America especially, that is something we tend to lack.
3. What benefits will it have for our community?
Knowing the exact location where your lettuce grew is pretty cool, I won't lie. It feels pretty awesome to be able to drive past the farm each day on my way to work and see what they're up to. Also, shopping local is statistically proven to strengthen the economy in your area. As a local public school teacher. I'm down with that. This great infographic really breaks it down:
4. Is it worth the price?
For us, it definitely is. On average we would make 3-4 trips a week to the store for produce. My guy being vegan means that produce and veggies are our main source of nutrients because our diet is plant based. So, it averages to about $15-20 dollars a week. We were spending triple that. It really helps us keep our budget under control.
5. How does it work?
Each CSA works differently but ours is pretty straightforward. Our CSA, Field to Fork, has several different sized options for families to choose from. The price varies by that size also, which is great. It really works within our budget and amounts we're comfortable with. You do get a lot of food too! So far we have really enjoyed our experience and highly recommend joining a CSA!
Here's some images we snapped during last weeks pick up!
I'm not going to lie... we ate almost all the cherries in the car on the way back to the house. They were so delicious!
Need more information on Farm Shares? Here are some great sources!
Happy eating, my friends!