Seeds, fertilizers and… Here are 10 things your CSA investment secures.
1. Diversified farming rotations: In the landscape of soy and corn, CSA provides a unique opportunity for organic farmers to experiment and diversify their crop rotations. Here at WSF, we have a six year rotation of vegetables, grains and grasses. A diversity of plant species in farming systems is critical to restoring the quality of our soils in Ohio.
2. Year-round employment for farmers: At Wayward Seed, we work year-round to grow, store, pack and deliver food. Our CSA helps with yearly startup costs and ensures ongoing production in the greenhouse and the packing house.
3. Access to capital for young farmers: Although I’m not so young anymore, it’s important to realize that there are over 8,000 CSA farms in the country today. Many of those are young farmers who are creating a new farming economy and are in search of stable markets to grow their businesses. CSA is the best way to interact with a farmer in the marketplace.
4. Lots of greens: Arby’s has the meats…we have the greens, from Broccoli Raab to Braising Mix. CSAs are unparalleled in the quality of their greens.
5. A sense of community: In a hectic world of technology and overbooked schedules, CSA brings you to a pick up location, a home, a farmers’ market. It’s a commitment to the farm, a commitment to the environment, and it’s a commitment to your health. We do CSA together!
6. Nutrient dense food: I test our soil multiple times each season to assess our farm’s health. We also text Brix values of our food for quality. I can taste the difference, I hope you can, too!
7. Unique varieties: We like interesting greens, roots and especially onion varieties. I still think the Rossa di Milano onion is the best product we grow on the farm. Onions are the unsung heroes of our foods flavor. They are the role player that never makes the All-Star team. Your cooking is only as good as your onions.
8. Freshness: You know that feeling you get when you cook that first broccoli of the fall season…it tastes so strong, so mustard like, so sweet. That’s because…it’s FRESH!
9. Inspiring creativity in the kitchen: What do I do with Rutabaga? I’ve never cooked Fennel. CSA is a support system for your new endeavors in the kitchen.
10. A future for farming: We want vibrancy in our future food system. We want more choices as consumers. We want more transparency and accountability for the safety of our food. CSA represents ALL of those things. The future is now. Our new farming economy is nascent, yet fragile. CSA is a bridge to a brighter food system–don’t forget its importance to “the movement.” If we lose CSAs, it won’t be just the farmers losing a market, we will all have lost. The future of CSA is in your hands.
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