National CSA Day!!!
It’s become a little cliché, “knowing where your food comes from”. Yet, I feel very deeply that we all need this connection. The act of eating connects us to nature. We confront so many distractions in our modern lives. We suffer myriad attacks upon our humanity daily. The splendor of 21st Century civilization works to isolate us from each other and from the earth processes that sustain us. It’s easy to become cynical, disempowered and disheartened.
Being a member of a CSA is hopeful, empowering and heartening. CSA stands for community supported agriculture, but others have pointed out that it is also agriculture supported community.
There are immense benefits to joining Riverbound Farm CSA. First off, you get a healthy supply of incredible, fresh, nutritious, organically grown vegetables for the length of the growing season (and a little beyond). And, you get our superior produce (I know I’m biased, but it just is) for less than you would pay for organic produce of lesser quantity and quality at the store. Next, you’re keeping it local. You know exactly whose work you’re paying for when you pay for your Riverbound Farm CSA membership: ours. And local means fewer miles of transportation and decreased associated costs to the environment and society. And, local means community. We’re neighbors. All of us who are part of the CSA are neighbors to one degree or another. And there is fellowship in sharing food, and in the case of the CSA, in sharing a place. You know where your beautiful bunch of carrots grew. You can walk out in the field and stick your hands in the soil. You can measure the procession of the seasons by the contents of your meals. And you can pin that procession to a real place where the life that feeds you unfolds with those fundamental rhythms of sun and moon, rain and snow, seed and shoot, leaf and flower, growth and death, spring, summer, autumn, winter, spring, summer and so on. The farm where your food grows can serve as a bit of an anchor. It has certainly served as ours.
In addition to these benefits to you, your support of the CSA benefits us and our farm. For one, we believe in sharing what the farm can provide. We want our community to benefit from the food and the connection to the farm. It is very powerful and positive to see our members every week, picking out their week’s vegetables, talking to each other, asking about the farm, sharing recipes, giving thanks for the food. We thrive on that. We love to be your farmers.
Also, the CSA model, as opposed to selling our produce through other avenues, allows us to place our focus on farming. We’re able to grow a large diversity of crops without having to place so much emphasis on profitability for each individual item. Diversity of crops in turn nourishes us as eaters and nourishes the land from which it is grown. And diversity safeguards us against crop failures: if one crop fails, we have fifty others to help make up for it. Because we have the support of our CSA members, we can farm like this.
A lot of our expenses come at the beginning of the season, months before we have any produce to sell. By gaining the commitment of CSA members, and through receiving some of your payments during this time of year, we’re able to purchase our seeds and supplies, hire labor, and make other needed expenses to get the season started.
CSA Day, February 24th, is a movement started by small farmers to help grow participation in CSAs throughout the world. Statistically, the last Friday of February is the busiest CSA sign-up day of the year across the country. If you think you’d like to give Riverbound Farm CSA a try this year we hope you’ll consider signing up this week. We need your support and we have a lot to offer.
2017 is going to be a great season. Fresh from our year in Hawai’i we have new passion, new skills, new vision and some new plans. We’ll be growing multiple plantings of more than 170 different crops and varieties. We’re putting down some perennial roots and planting berries and fruit trees. We’re building a new play area. We’ve got an amazing new team of draft horses chomping at the bit to get in the field. We’re building a fourth greenhouse. We’re now able to accept SNAP benefits in an effort to make what we have to offer available to more people. We’re going to be busy, so we’ll be hosting some work parties, too, and you’re invited.
Please call us or email with any questions you have. Visit our website. Share our Facebook page, please. Let other folks know about us. Thank you for all your support past, present and future.