Tag Archives: Community Supported Agriculture

Delicious Baskets of Food From Local Farmers

Does that sound too good to be true, “Delicious Baskets of Food From Local Farmers”?

I get tired of all the super-hype headlines that entice us to click on links. You’ve seen it, “You’ll never believe…!” Or, “You’ll never guess what happens next!” and my least favourite, “This will change your life!!” Just for the record this claim isn’t all about hype, it is true, just might be of interest, and may even change a wee part of your life–the cooking and eating part.

Watering CanDid you know there are programs were you can get food from local farmers delivered (almost) to your door? Located all over BC, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs offer access to delicious, home grown goodies without you having to do any of the weeding. Continue reading

To CSA or Not to CSA

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) can be a great local food solution and definitely brings members up close and personal with the issues and challenges farmers face in bringing labour-intensive product to market while trying to make a living wage.

On the other hand, it may not be for everyone, as Bob Morris makes clear in his New York Times contribution, On This Farm There Was Animosity.

Love the concept or hate it, only the most rigid idealist won’t be able to laugh at one man’s entertaining if begrudging experience:

“I don’t care if it’s good for you, because to me kale has always been a four-letter vegetable. We seemed to have a lifetime supply this summer courtesy of the local community-supported agriculture farm. When Ira, my spouse, told me he signed us up for $575 last spring, I balked at the cost. Did it really make sense? Our little Long Island weekend town already has a farm stand and a grocer with local produce…

I don’t do well with rations, cooperation or the righteous, and the weekly e-mails we started getting from the farm were rich with the passion of latter-day locavores. We were encouraged to learn to compost and constantly asked to help the manager and his apprentices with the farm work. But that’s your job, I thought.”

Read the full article

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)

In my attempt to purchase organic produce whenever possible, I often come up against two things: produce flown in from Mexico (not exactly environmentally sensitive) or prices that necessitate re-mortgaging the condo to afford it (not tempting). Finding a good-quality, consistent source of organic produce can be a challenge.

I was very interested, therefore, to learn of a new-to-me concept in produce: Community Supported Agriculture. Instead of a small farm only selling their harvest through farmers markets or retail outlets, they divide the harvest into manageable parcels (for example, 60 shares) and pre-sell the parcels to the local community. Harvest shares are often delivered to a pick-up point each week.

Many of these farms are family-owned and several are certified organic. Harvests usually begin in May, run through October (18-20 weeks), and shares are approximately $500-600 for the entire season. Some farms even offer egg shares, as well, for an additional fee.

So, if this concept is as attractive to you as I found it, take a look at the following farms and see if CSA is for you:

Nathan Creek Organic Farm is in Langley and offers many drop off locations throughout Metro Vancouver. The farm expanded last year and now offers 100 shares.

Klippers Organics Farm is in the Okanagan but offers four pick up locations around Vancouver. This is the farm’s first year with a CSA program.

UBC Farm also offers organic produce and is entering its fifth season. Pick up is at the farm.