As I sit in my kitchen writing this post today, it is January 31. There is a fresh coat of snow on the ground. And I only can think of how many more months until I can have freshly picked lettuce from the field? In fact, this thought is emphasized even more as I prepare lunch ,and the lettuce from the grocery store says it was picked on January 9 and came all the way from Arizona to Pennsylvania. Obviously, this is because Arizona still has moderate temperatures to grow lettuce in January, but it doesn’t make the lettuce taste any better. In fact, it doesn’t have much taste at all, which makes my mouth water more for our lettuce. Eating seasonally is very important. Here in western Pennsylvania, most of our fresh produce is consumed in the spring and summer months. So why is it beneficial to join a CSA if you want to start eating seasonally? Let’s consider 5 reasons.
Eating seasonally through a CSA provides freshly picked produce
Joining a CSA allows you to consume produce that is grown locally and seasonally in the region where you live. Therefore, you are able to enjoy the freshest produce. As a CSA member with Haffey Family Farm, your produce is picked fresh and is therefore at its peak ripeness and flavor. (I mean, have you tried our cantaloupes?) In addition, the produce does not have to travel long distances to reach you. The lettuce you receive in your box is harvested within 24 hours before it is delivered to you; not two, three or four weeks before it lands in your fridge.
Eating seasonally through a CSA provides more nutrient filled produce
Seasonally grown produce is more nutrient-dense, as it has had the proper amount of time to mature and develop its full nutritional value. By joining Haffey Family Farm CSA, you are able to enjoy produce that has been personally cared for by the farmer and hand picked. This ensures more nutrient-rich produce because it is not harvested too early.
Eating seasonally through a CSA allows you to eat out of your comfort zone
Have you ever had turnips? Have you ever tried to make your own pumpkin puree? Or what about mustard greens? Have you always wanted to try these items but were maybe a little bit scared to? By joining a CSA you are exposed to a wider variety of produce, including items that may not be in your daily menu or that may not be available at the grocery store. Perhaps, you may feel intimidated by that thought. However, an advantage of being a Haffey Family Farm CSA member, is that we help educate you on how to use those “out of your comfort zone” items with our weekly meal plans included in your subscription. Still not sure on some items? Don’t worry. Just ask and we will do our best to help you or direct you in the right direction.
Eating seasonally through a CSA helps the environment
Here at Haffey Family Farm, we farm using organic and sustainable farming methods. Everything is personally harvested and delivered to you by our family. By joining our CSA and eating seasonally, it helps to reduce the environmental impact of food production by supporting local farmers and reducing the need for transportation and preservation of out-of-season produce.
Eating seasonally through a CSA connects you to a community
Joining a CSA connects you with a community of people who share your interest in eating locally and sustainably grown produce. In addition, you are able to form a direct relationship with the grower of your food. You can communicate directly with us regarding your produce including how it was grown, when it was harvested, how to preserve it or how to prepare it. As a CSA member with Haffey Family Farm we will connect you to other members who will also share recipes and tips within our private Facebook group. When you join our CSA it really is like you are part of our family or should we say FARMILY?
The next time you buy lettuce from your local grocery store, check out the package and see where it was shipped from and the date it was harvested. How would you describe how it tastes? Now, think how it would taste if it had been picked that morning and delivered directly to you? Probably, like me, your mouth will start watering. By joining Haffey Family Farm Pittsburgh-based CSA, you will be able to enjoy seasonal vegetables, recipes and preservation tips. I promise you won’t regret it. So come join our FARMILY!
For more information on our CSA: www.haffeyfamilyfarm.com
All the best,
Kim Haffey- Haffey Family Farm