Ya know those little paper stickers on your fruit and veggies that you buy at the the grocery store? I suspect you too have eaten a few of these too. Did you know that the code on them identifies the produce as either organic or not? It’s true! If it starts with a four, it’s your run of the mill fruit or veggie, if it starts with a nine on the other hand you are beholding superior organic goodness! Now you know.
Erik and I decided to purchase a share from one of the many Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms in our area. Basically you buy a weekly allowance of the summer fruit and veggie crop of a local farm/mega garden. You pay up front at the beginning of the season before you know if flood, drought, or pestilence shall befall you. Therein lies the risk, but really, I believe it is a great opportunity for a family to pull together and pray to “The Lord of the Harvest”. It builds faith. We are a part of the Gooseberry Hill Farm CSA. They deliver, which I found to be a great perk, on Friday’s to our area and bring a basket (like the one you carry at the grocery store when you foolishly convince yourself you don’t really need a cart) containing whatever fruits and veggies grew that week plus brown eggs. Yum!
We find a CSA to be a good way to keep our money in our community while feeding our family organic (or pretty darn close to organic) produce. I’ve been trying to keep track of how much the produce we’ve received versus what I believe it would have cost if I had just gone to the farmers market and we are currently just about breaking even. I’ll be sure to keep you updated on how this is going from a financial standpoint as the summer continues.
I went out to the farm last Thursday to pick up our share before leaving town and got a chance to talk to our farmer, John and his little dog. He said that due to all the ice last winter, some of the annual winter veggies got smothered and haven’t been growing like expected. I found it to be very refreshing to literally see where the food that goes on my family’s plates came from. Later this summer I’ll take Nara out to visit the chickens. She really enjoys that. I am convinced it will only help her in her relationship with food to grow up taking part in the joy that comes from being a part of the cycle and process. That’s why I grew tomatoes on the patio this year (and cause they taste so much better grown ourselves!). She’s enjoyed watching them get bigger and being able to rattle their cages. I’m going to teach her to water them next. What a fun mess that should be!