Publisher's Note: Local food
By Jody Reese
Community Supported Agriculture, or CSA, is a rather trendy term for something most of our grandparents did routinely: buying food from a local farmer.
A CSA is a group of people who pay a farmer for a share of the food he or she will produce. Most are for vegetables, but some are for meats too. Usually CSAs are purchased in the spring. This helps the farmer by providing money in the planting part of the season. Consumers get a fresh and usually affordable supply of food through the growing season, June through October.
Though the CSA-ers can be a little like those early adopters of the Prius — like they are single-handedly saving the Earth and annoying us in the process — CSAs are great for practical purposes. Sure you’re supporting sustainable farming, but you’re also eating better and for less than if you’d bought the veggies at the supermarket. The other thing I like about the CSA is that you get the food every week. It’s a nice constant supply of food.
Local restaurants too are trying to get in on the act. Cotton and Republic in Manchester are both trying to organize a local buying group for restaurants, so they can get fresh and consistent food from local farms. You can find a story on our website in the March 5, 2009, issue (search for CSA in the search bar at the bottom of our front page) that provides a list of CSAs. Costs run in the $350 to $450 for a season.