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My case for CSA

March 23, 2010

For the past year I have been wanting to buy a ‘share’ in the local CSA program here in Spokane but have yet to ‘sell it’ to the man. If you have never heard of a CSA then I will present some of what I know. Basically it is a share or subscription in a local farm that produces anything from vegetables and fruits to meat and much in between. When you purchase a share you receive a box of whatever is in season every week. This is such a great way to eat healthy and support your local farms.

There are so many benefits to buying and eating locally produced food. You are directly supporting the farmers to keep their farms organic (getting certified is a lengthy and expensive process) and are not supporting the conglomerate factory farms that help put these small family farms out of business (and out of their homes too!). The food doesn’t travel thousands of miles to get to your door. Yeah you may be buying organic, but how far has it traveled so you can eat it? That’s not ‘green’. You get to see and visit ‘your food’! You get to see and visit the people who make it happen and who work so hard to help keep the earth ‘green’ and help keep the true organic market alive. You get to try out new foods or foods that you wouldn’t normally buy. This might actually result in some creative cooking that you would otherwise not attempt! You learn about what can be grown seasonally in your area – naturally of course! The food is healthier, fresher and retains more nutrients because it hasn’t traveled for days or weeks to get to you, not to mention it’s organic!

There are other reasons to join a CSA as well, one being you spend less at the grocery store on impulse buys and junk. You do pay more for what you are eating but it’s almost a guarantee less food will go into your garbage. Plus you don’t have to waste time shopping, it’s all either delivered to your door or to your local farmers market and you pick it all up in one handy cooler.

The main concern I have right now is trying to present the facts and the cost breakdown to my husband. The particular CSA I’m looking into is Rocky Ridge Ranch. Basically we’re looking at $100 for the deposit and $25 per week for the produce box. It seems like a lot of money but when I think about how much we spend in a month on groceries at the store, it’s not all that much after all. It’s just the thought of paying up front. For the meat box the cost is a $200 deposit and $50 weekly and you get over 10 lbs worth of beef, pork and poultry. All their animals are raised humanely and fed a natural healthy diet free from soy and corn and the beef is grass fed. At the end of the season they throw in a free turkey close to the Thanksgiving holiday!

So in conclusion for just over $75 per week (way under what we spend on impulse crap at the grocery store and taking into account the deposit) we get enough beautifully produced food to feed our family well!

I see I have sold it to myself, now for the man!

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