The Best Way to Get Cheap, Local, Organic Produce

Living in Vermont, I learnt to consistently recycle, to buy local and to enjoy nature. I even tried my hand at gardening lettuce in small pots on my back deck, which reminds me. I picked and ate the lettuce every time I was on that back deck. ... And then, I left them in the containers, thinking they'd just grow, instead they withered and died.

Last summer also, I was in my element planting and weeding a summer garden of peppers, cabbage, broccoli, tomatoes, and a few other vegetables. This summer I'm heading back to do it again. ... And as the temperatures warm up, local farmers' markets reopen with fresh vegetables, fruits and baked goods. Organic and fresh are always welcomed. It certainly reminds of trips to the Castries market as a child. 

I have also enjoyed the benefits of having friends, part of a local Vermont CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program. That meant a summer of a variety of fresh foods, and awesome barbecues. CSAs are the next best and cheapest thing to growing your own organic produce, so buy a share in a local farm.

Here’s how it works:
You pay for produce up front in the winter or spring to help the farmer plant and grow the food and then partake of its bounty during summer and fall. Depending on how the CSA is set up, your produce will either be delivered to your door or you pick up the produce every week at a central location near you.

Just a few advantages of joining a CSA:
It’s recession-proof. If you break down the cost, it usually comes out to $18-$22 per week for more fresh, organic veggies than you know what to do with. Cutting out the packager and/or retailer saves money.
You can share your CSA share with a friend or neighbor.
Since you’re given what’s been harvested that week, you eat seasonally.
You will impress your friends with the cool-sounding ingredients you’re working with.
You can visit the farm and talk to the farmer, or just take pictures
You get a serious boost in green street cred when you can brag about owning a share in a local, organic farm.

So…
1.) Find one near you using LocalHarvest’s CSA locator.
2.) New Yorkers can use Just Food’s CSA locator.

... And if that does not work for you, go back to basics, start your own garden. Even if it's only herbs.  Don't forget to share your bounty or feast with neighbors and friends.  Summer time!

2 comments

  1. Your veggies look lovely!!! And I'm totally taking a page out of your book....LOL. I'm getting my first home in about 2 weeks, and I've been trying to figure out how to get a garden going! I used to be a part of a local CSA here in Miami, and it was GREAT!! I've been DYING to get my hands on my yard, but my patio really doesn't have the space! There's a company in Miami who builds custom raised beds (http://www.miamikitchengardens.com) I'm working with them now to build me one for the patio!!! I'll be asking you for tips and tricks along the way.....lol!!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. jarden-ou pli belle ee! lol my parents are at their gardening phase right now, and hopefully one day ill get to mine. learning about all the food dyes, gmos, steroids, and other pesticides being sprayed on them gets infuriating and makes you wonder what are you really putting inside of you.

    ReplyDelete