Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Time for Fresh

Fresh produce is great in the spring, summer, and fall (some produce is fresher and better tasting in each season). If you've ever had a tomato plant or fresh herbs growing in your backyard, you know what fresh tastes like. Fresh produce is also FANTASTIC for your baby, because you know it's fresh and hasn't been sitting around. The longer produce sits around in a store, the more vitamins and minerals that are lost due to aging.

Maybe I've been living in the dark ages, because I just learned about the most awesome program: Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). Wow! What an awesome way to help out your local farmers! I love the thought of supporting local businesses and do when I can, but am always learning new way to provide support. Click here to search for a CSA in your area and to learn more.

I've heard of neighborhood community gardens, as my town has many. But I hadn't heard of the CSA Program. The CSA Program consists of "shareholders" who sign up to receive weekly fresh produce, and sometimes other extras, such as eggs. You receive a variety of produce, depending on the season. If you receive more produce than your older family members can consume, you can make it into baby food and freeze for later! Some of these programs deliver to your door or you go to a local pickup location. You provide, in return, payment to help the farm with operation costs. Some towns have a lot of programs, and some only have a few. Most of them begin in May or June. Go here for a great description from someone who has been using the program (and check out their awesome blog, Once a Month Mom!).

Now, I have contacted the ones in our area, and unfortunately, they are full already. So what's the other option (besides planting a garden, which is another wonderful idea if you have space!)?

Farmer's Markets are wonderful places to pick up fresh produce, meat, fish, eggs, and others. Again, this is a great way to support local businesses or farms, and a great way to eat healthier and try food that perhaps you wouldn't pick up at the store. Click here to search for farmer's markets in your area. Farmer's Markets are wonderful places to get some great things!
Have fun with these great programs!

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