From the farm to you the easy way. Join a CSA.
Community Shared (or Supported) Agriculture is redefining local farming and local eating. It’s a simple concept really. Customers sign up for a share of the farm at the beginning of the growing season by paying a one-time or monthly subscription fee, and in return, they receive a basket (generally every week) of food from the farm. The boxes vary each time depending on what’s fresh from the field, so every week is a delicious surprise. And that feeling of experiencing something new and delicious every week is something that CSA supporters really love.
With spring in the air, CSAs throughout Nova Scotia are signing up new members right now. And the great news is there are more than 30 of them around the province, so chances are good that there’s one near you. Most CSAs focus on a wide variety of fresh vegetables and fruits, but you’ll also find others that include eggs, meats and more.
Many CSAs also deliver, either directly to your home, or to predetermined drop-off/pickup locations, making it super convenient to eat fresh and local. And if you’re a fan of organic food, good news…there are a growing number of CSAs committed to organic food production. The folks at the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN) have a list of organic CSAs to help you find the perfect match.
What else can we tell you about how great CSAs are? Well, let’s see. How about:
CSAs are good for the farmer and the consumer
Your commitment at the beginning of the season allows the farmer to fund seed and other equipment. It also allows them to plan and plant according to demand. It’s efficient and cost-effective.
CSAs are environmentally friendly
Purchasing food that is grown close to home reduces the transportation costs and environmental impact. Local farms are also committed to biodiversity and sustainable farming techniques that ensure the land will remain fertile for future generations
CSAs are economical
If you do some math on the amount of food your receive each week, you’ll find that the cost is quite reasonable. Boxes usually contain more than enough to feed one person, so friends, co-workers or family members often split the cost of a full share, making it even more affordable.
CSAs encourage trying new things
Most CSA farms strive for diversity and a wide variety in crop production, so over the course of the season CSA farmers usually grow an eclectic mix of goodness. You’ll discover varieties that you might not otherwise find or have even tried before. It’s a new adventure every week. Since CSA members invest at the start of the growing season, you often have the chance to talk to the farmers, make suggestions and influence what is grown throughout the season.
CSAs put culture back into your food
There’s something special about knowing where your food comes from. Agriculture is part of the fabric our communities in Nova Scotia. Understanding who grew it and how makes that connection even more personal.
Receiving a steady supply of farm fresh produce, providing a boost to the local economy and enjoying a new local eating experience with every delivery. What’s not to love about joining a CSA? It’s pretty easy to see why their popularity is growing, and now’s your chance to get a share of what will be growing during the 2015 season by joining one today.