Monday, March 3, 2008

Go Local...

Prior to using Door-to-Door Organics to get my organic produce, I was on the hunt for a local buying club or coop in my area that I could join. I was having trouble finding one that was close enough to my home, so when my friend introduced me to Door-to-Door, I thought I had found my solution. I figured I would use the deliver service until the summer when I would get my veggies from my family's garden and farmer's markets in my area.  However just last week I discovered that some mothers in my area were trying to put together a group to join a "Community Supported Agriculture" (CSA) farm.  

A CSA is a way for consumers in an area to support and create a relationship with a local farm. Members of a CSA pledge in advance to cover the farms anticipated costs.  By doing so, members receive weekly boxes of produce for the season.  Where I live the season runs from around May through November. Most CSA farms offer high quality produce that is grown organically, avoiding pesticides and fertilizers.   

So now I was in a quandary.  Stick with my original plan or join the CSA?  

Then I received in the mail, via Netflix, the movie The Real Dirt on Farmer John, a documentary about John Peterson, a.k.a Farmer John, a midwest farmer who life parallels the history of American farming in the late 20th century.  

Peterson came from a family of farmers who struggled, like most farmers, to make ends meet. Peterson's father died when he was teenager, which forced him to be in charge of the farm.  By the 1980's, when most farmers were trouble, so was Peterson who had to sell off most of his farm to make ends meet. Destitute and depressed, Peterson took time away from farming and returned in the '90s.  Deciding to change his farm from a mono-culture, chemical dependent farm, to an organic farm and connect himself to the land, Peterson turned his farm, Angelic Organics, into the one of the largest CSAs in the country. 

So after seeing the story of Farmer John, I have decided that it is important, not only from my families health perspective, but for community support, to join the CSA.  I might be overflowing in veggies this summer but my husband loves to entertain.  Just hope our friends like veggies!

To find CSA farms in your area go to Local Harvest and Eat Wild, or a buying club go to United Buying Clubs. In addition, Local Harvest also lists farmer markets, coops, restaurants and farms.  

1 comment:

brenda said...

I lovedd the movie.....for many reasons...among them that I went to the same college as John, just about the same time, so was part of that whole cultural shift.

On another topic: STYROFOAM
Tucson uses styrofoam alot in take-outs........I want to stop this.....put a ban on styrofoam thruout the whole city. Got any ideas on how to start? I know other cities have banned it.