We have a good Farmers Market in our town. Farmers from the green hills of Michigan bring fresh local produce into our city life. They bring fruits and vegetables, and they bring their stories. My kids love to talk to the growers, especially the Beekeeper. He and his wife produce honey, they also educate and inspire the kids. As much as we appreciate and look forward to visits to our Farmers Market, we find that we need to supplement what we are able to purchase with produce from other sources.

photo: www.twofatbellies.com

Buying local seasonal produce is a style of eating that has deep roots, but is largely uncommon today. During the growing season we prepare and eat fruits and vegetables when they’ve ripened. We don’t eat tomato gazpacho in June. Likewise, there will be no strawberry desserts in August. But for people who are food adventurers, eating from local offerings is The Best.

Through LocalHarvest.org I was able to find two growers in my area who participate in Community Supported Agriculture. The idea is simple: member consumers pay a seasonal fee to the CSA farm. In return the grower provides each CSA member with choice in-season produce. Customarily, the grower prepares boxes of produce for pick-up. But the arrangements vary according to the capabilities of the farm.

It may seem as though the benefits of the arrangement favor the grower, unless you consider sustainable agriculture a necessity we can’t afford to lose. Programs like CSA are one way we can work to improve the way Americans eat and support growers in their efforts.

Here’s my case for changing the current food culture; I grew up in the 1970′s, when little was known about the effects of processed and ready-to-serve foods. Promotion of fast food products generally included a promise that labor-saving foods would improve your life. Well, here we are nearly forty years later – I’m confident that fast food has not improved our lives, certainly not our health.

You may like this video, Ryan and Sara explain the CSA program very well. And their farm is spectacular!

You can also watch the video on their website at: redfirefarm.com

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