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Subscriptions to local farms can green your diet

Posted June 1, 2009

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— A growing trend called community supported agriculture (CSA) lets people get subscriptions to farms for local, organic food.

CSA farms can green your diet CSA farms can green your diet

In Wake County, about 160 people have paid a $500 annual fee to join CSA group Hilltop Farms. They get first crack at farmer Fred Miller's organic fruits and vegetables.

Member Morgan Crawford said she enjoys having fresh produce whenever she puts together a salad.

"The day I get it, it's probably come off the farm. Maybe the day before, but it's usually that day," she said.

Crawford and other members pick up the produce they want at Miller's weekly drop sites around the Triangle. Other CSA farms will deliver a box of produce to members' homes each week.

Miller said that the green movement has pushed more business his way, mostly from people who local, organic food to green their diet.

"People are realizing that most of the food we eat travels 1,500 miles from the farm to the plate," Miller said.

Hillford Farms members can also get a taste of what it takes to bring food from the field to the table. Crawford occasionally works on the farm in exchange for a lower subscription rate.

"I was picking snow peas last week, and it took me forever to get the snow peas. It made me appreciate the price of snow peas," she said.

Working so closely to the land, her 5-year-old daughter Hadley can also make a connection with her food, Crawford said.

"We went out a few weeks ago and picked strawberries, and Hadley was eating them right out of the field," she said.

Miller acknowledged that the upfront cost to join a CSA might be high for some, but he said, you get what you pay for.

"We're not out to be the cheapest. We're just out to be the freshest and best possible food we can grow," Miller said.

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  • mpheels Jun 1, 2009

    http://www.localharvest.org/csa/ has a list of CSAs searchable by state/zip.

  • Pineview Style Jun 1, 2009

    If you take something green from the garden the Democrats will tax it. -tatermommy52

    You beat me to it! I was thinking that it won't be too long beofre your friendly politician proposes a "Fresh Foods Tax," since not everyone is "fortunate" to have the means or income to get fresh produce.

  • jodsum Jun 1, 2009

    Does anyone know how to get in touch with one of these kind of farms?

  • ncsu91938 Jun 1, 2009

    My girls are lucky. My parents have a large garden and the girls get to "help" in it each year. They "dig for treasures" (potatoes), pick squash and peas, help freeze corn, etc. We also have a container garden on our deck. They are growing pumpkins, yellow bell pepper, zucchini, cantaloupe, watermelon, tomatoes, okra, and other stuff. The girls are 2 and 7 and love it!

  • justyouraveragegirl Jun 1, 2009

    I have been subscribing to Double T Farm's CSA for almost a year now. Farmer Tom is amazing - he is very communicative about how/what is in season and ready each week. Since joining, my diet has improved substantially due to all these fresh veggies just sitting in my fridge - it's fun to come up with creative ways to eat all these fresh veggies! I strongly suggest trying a CSA for a season to see how it can improve your diet too!

  • jbyrd Jun 1, 2009

    $500 is not really that expensive. If you have ever planted and worked your own garden (talking about real garden,not just 2 or 3 hills of tomatoes) you would know that $500 is cheap.

  • tatermommy52 Jun 1, 2009

    If you take something green from the garden the Democrats will tax it.

  • jrfergerson Jun 1, 2009

    Ticks lurk in weeds in a garden so be sure to check yourself over when you return from a garden full of weeds.

  • Sidekick Jun 1, 2009

    My three year old granddaughter already knows how mulberries taste, she is going to pick some squash from our little garden this weekend and in another week or so, will be picking blackberries. Pretty soon, tomatoes. She can tell you how to pick the end off a honeysuckle blossom and lick the nectar. Yes, I am fortunate to have a yard that provides for these things, but she is getting an education she will never get in the classroom. Not ony that, we are bonding in a way that will provide me adoration for as long as I live. I have yet to show her how to operate a vidoe game control. And probably never will. She is clever enough that she will easily pick that up and probably get pretty bored with it.

  • squid90 Jun 1, 2009

    Supporting ones local farmers market is also a great way to get fresh veggies and fruit. It is usually picked the night before or for some veggies the day of the market.. And the great thing about farmers markets is you can actually talk to the people who grow the food you are buying. So for those who cannot afford CSA, get to a local farmers market and get the same great local produce for a good cost. Support local growers.

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