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Think about a small village on the San Mateo Coast in say, 1850. Now think about the households in that community. What did they eat for dinner? There was no mass-produced food, no Big Ag, no supermarket stocked with frozen pizzas and bags of chips. What made it to your dinner plate was what the land was producing: various meats, eggs, vegetables, fruits, nuts, and grains, all depending on the season, the region, and the individual farm. Everything was Peninsula local food.
Now, fast-forward over 150 years to the present day. We are once again learning that a delicious plate of food depends upon ingredients that are grown organically and sustainably close to home. In today’s world, farmers have responded to our growing demand for SOUL food (that’s short for sustainable, organic, unprocessed and local) by creating Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs. CSAs allow community members to buy shares of a farm’s harvest directly from the farmer. The farmer provides the consumer with a box of farm-fresh products and receives the reliability of a committed customer base in exchange. CSAs make it easy for people in the local community to get high-quality produce, meat, and dry goods at competitive prices with a lower-than-usual carbon footprint. It’s a terrific model for both consumers and farmers, and it’s thriving right here in the Bay Area.
POST works with many local farmers that offer CSA boxes, and now is the perfect time to sign up for a 2015 subscription. Here some of our favorite CSAs – click through to learn more and sign up.
Blue House Farm: 8-10 different fresh fruits and vegetables (enough for 2-4 people each week), grown on POST-protected land in Pescadero. The boxes are delivered to POST’s Palo Alto office for easy pickup on the Peninsula.
Pie Ranch: 9-13 different fruits, vegetables, legumes, herbs and more, grown on POST-protected land in Pescadero
Markegard Family Grass-Fed: Beef, pork, lamb, and poultry, all sustainably raised on POST-protected land in Pescadero. Their meat is also featured in Fifth Crow Farm’s CSA.
Root Down Farm: Offers a chicken share directly from the farm; meat is also featured in Fifth Crow Farm’s CSA
Fifth Crow Farm: Leafy greens, veggies, berries, eggs, herbs and more, including meat from Root Down Farm and Markegard Family Grass-Fed
Bon appetit – we hope you have a delicious summer!
Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) protects and cares for open space, farms and parkland in and around Silicon Valley. Since its founding in 1977, POST has been responsible for saving more than 75,000 acres as permanently protected land in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties.