Community Supported Agriculture

The last few days I’ve been considering my summer plans.  Mostly, whether I wanted to hare off to Europe this summer and be less fiscally responsible than I’ve been trying to be.  (The other option is to go on a long-distance bicycle ride with my sister.  I don’t think this summer is the most realistic one to try to get me to cycle through the Rockies.)

I decided that, while going to Europe for even just a few weeks would be awesome, it would also put me back in other areas.  I’m really looking forward to having a summer to work on my story in some leisure, to tend my container garden, to explore Halifax on foot and by bike; I also have some academic projects to work on.  And while I could certainly work on my creative writing in Europe, and, being a medievalist, I have been known to make the argument that a trip to Europe totally counts as research, nevertheless I decided against it for a simple reason.

I want a farm.

I want to live in the country more than I want to go to Europe right now.  I want to live by writing and gardening and maybe the odd sessional course or paying guest.  (I think hosting a writing/artistic retreat would be delightful all round.)  I want to grow most of my own food and have plenty to share, I want to have time, I want to live seasonally and with my fingers in the soil.

This is all quite manageable, eventually.  I reckon most of what I want to do will start being self-sustaining after about five years.  Before then I need to come up with a down payment and enough continuing income to pay for a mortgage and other necessities, and a car.  If I work on my gardening skills, I might be able to put together what’s called a CSA — a community supported agriculture — programme.  Basically people buy shares in the crop from the farmer, who has the benefit of a set income, and in return the shareholders get good, local, seasonal produce in a weekly box.

This being the case, I thought it behooved me to participate in a CSA from the shareholder side of things.  This was the other part of the decision about summer plans: whether I could buy a year’s worth of weekly food deliveries without them going to waste.  A week here or there isn’t too much of a problem, as I can probably find a friend willing to get them that week for me, and, if not, it goes to the food bank.  Six weeks . . . not so brilliant.

So I’ve decided, I’m staying here, eating locally, seasonally, and as healthily as possible.  I bought three shares in the TapRoot Farms CSA: one of vegetables, one of fruit, and a biweekly one of meat.  These start on 2nd April; I’m sure I will let you know what I get and how it goes.  I’m very excited.

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5 thoughts on “Community Supported Agriculture

  1. Fabulous! We’re working to succeed with not wasting food from our community box as well. It’s wonderful to only have local food in the fridge, and it really challenges me to cook different things every week!

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  2. Pingback: First Box of CSA Goodies « The Rose and Phoenix Inn

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