I didn’t buy a farm share because I’m a feel good hippy vegan who loves the environment and drives a Prius. The truth is that I love steak, I hate being reminded to recycle, and my car gets an un-brag-worthy 25 miles per gallon on premium fossil fuel. Although I did once own some Birkenstocks, but let’s not get into thatâ€¦
I bought a farm share because I was fed up with the sad looking fruits and veggies in the supermarket aisle and having to pay through the nose for organic produce. Farmers Markets are a lot of fun to go to, but they’re more expensive than going to Whole Foods (at least in this neck of the woods). If you’re familiar with Boston, you already know that despite being wickedly cheap, Haymarket is where freshness goes to die.
Because of the lack of decent produce I could acquire on a recent college grad’s paycheck my diet has been suffering. Most of my food comes in boxes or cans. I wind up eating out more often than I should – I think the ladies at Tacos Lupita start making my Al Pastor burrito the second I walk in their door now. I grew up surrounded by farmland and took being able to buy a giant bag of corn by the side of the road for granted. It’s a similar problem most urban dwellers face.
So then I hear from a few folks around Somerville about how happy they were participating in a farm share program run by Enterprise Farms in Whately, MA. Through their website I found that for $250 I could pick up a fresh-from-the-farm box of assorted fruits and veggies every week from September through November. Even better? I can pick that box right up in Davis Square (they also have many other convenient pick up locations in the metro Boston area). Not only would I be getting decent prices on organic food, but I’d also be helping out regional farmers by fronting them the cost of running the farm. Win-win, eh?
Buying a farm share is a part of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). Essentially it’s like buying stock in a local farm and you get delicious dividends. This subscription based farming and distribution method helps create sustainable agriculture. In case you were wondering about what’s available during brutal New England winters, Enterprise teams up with other farms doing it right up and down the East Coast to create a regional “foodshed”. While it may not be completely local for some of the year, they make a point to keep the distance of outsourced produce they buy for the CSA program to under 1,000 miles and grow what they can in their own greenhouses.
Next Wednesday I get to pick up my first share box – can’t wait to see what I’ll get. In the meantime I’ll be checking out this Farm Share Stories blog run by current members of the Enterprise Farms CSA program for some recipe ideas.