I have friends who have belonged to the Red Hook Added Value Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) in Brooklyn for years. For years I have envied the amazing bounty of seasonal fruits and vegetables they picked up every Saturday afternoon, grown right in the heart of Brooklyn. I’ve watched, quietly, and yearned to be disciplined enough to not only make the pick up every week, but to actually cook what I got, without wasting. I mean it’s kind of a win-win…locally grown, organic produce that is always in season at an affordable price, the opportunity to try new recipes and eat outside of the standard bag you usually bring home from the grocery store. For a number of reasons, I have decided it’s time, and I’m jumping in feet first.
CSA’s started back in the 1960s and have a fairly simple structure. Some specifics may differ, but basically you pay a certain amount of money in support of a farm, or number of farms, for a season. In return, you are promised a share of the harvest – fruits, vegetables, herbs…some CSAs have add-ons for eggs, flowers, grains, even meat. You arrange for pick-up or delivery on a weekly, or bi-weekly basis, and you’re all set.
I’ve been doing some research into CSAs in my neck of the woods and would love to know about your experience in a CSA, or if you don’t belong, why not? Do you think eating is an ethical issue?