By Judi Gerber
Care2 Green Living
Becoming a CSA member (Community Supported Agriculture) is an increasingly popular way to buy local, seasonal produce directly from a farmer. With a CSA, you buy “shares” from a farmer that you pay for up front to cover the anticipated costs of the farm operation. In return, you get a box of fresh vegetables that is usually delivered each week.
Depending on the area you live in, and where the farm is, i.e. urban vs. rural, you can either pick up the box at the farm, or the farm has pick-ups or deliveries from a central location or locations on specific days and times.
While CSAs are a great way to support your local farmer and get involved in a community farm, CSA’s are not for everyone. Here are some things to think about and some questions to ask yourself before you join one.
How many fruits and vegetables do you really eat each day? Each week? While you may want to eat more and are working towards that goal, ask yourself honestly; “how much do I actually eat?” Is it worth the added expense to join if you are not going to eat all that you get?
You also want to be honest with yourself about the kind of eater you are. Are you picky? Are there some fruits or vegetables that you simply do not like, no matter what you do with them? If you are not adventurous, it will do you no good to get things you are not familiar with and that you may not like.
While your goal of joining a CSA may be to support a sustainable lifestyle, ironically if you don’t like what you are getting, you might end up wasting a lot of it and become frustrated because you don’t use what you get.
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