What's a CSA?
A CSA, sometimes called a Community Supported Agriculture Program, is a program with the goal to put people who use farm-grown products, (and that's just about all of us), and the Whittier farmers who grow them together. The program works on a subscription basis. Subscribers can purchase a subscription to the produce service for either a growing season or for the whole year.
How Whittier CSAs Work
Grocery shopping is a whole lot easier for Whittier CSA subscribers. As opposed to needing to wade through the produce section every week farmers do the work for them. Local farmers come up with a weekly basket of produce (sometimes meat and dairy as well) and deliver it to an established, central location, or subscribers can pick it up at the farm.
It really is a concept which is increasing in popularity across the country because it cuts out the middleman, assures farm-fresh produce at cheap prices, and is good for the environment because it minimizes transportation costs, as well. CSA subscriptions usually run from early May through September or October, based on where you reside.
Benefits of CSAs in Whittier, CA
What are the advantages of joining a Whittier CSA program? Well, the produce does not have to be transferred to a warehouse or group of supermarkets, it's only transferred once, to the pick-up location, so subscribers are helping save on fuel costs and spare the environment from emissions. One key advantage is the produce is just about as fresh as you can get, because it's chosen, sorted and delivered typically on the same day.
Often, it's less costly than buying produce through] supermarkets in Whittier, because it eliminates the middleman and connects the consumer and the local farmer without any markup on profit. Whittier CSAs profit the local economy, too, because they maintain the revenue right in the area, instead of sending it to other countries or other states where produce may originate.
Whittier CSA Programs Are on the Rise
Just a few short years ago, a CSA program probably didn't exist in your Whittier community. They've truly gained popularity in the last few years, and for good reason. They're a great way for farmers to know they will have a market for their crops, but they're a great way for the consumer to get high-quality products having to break the bank, too.
Usually, the crops are organic, so health-conscious Whittier customers can be certain they're eating right, and community supported agriculture programs offer a wide array of options, including;
You do not need to live right next to an agricultural area, either, often farmers will spread their produce around in many distinct cities to ensure all their crops are spoken for.
If you do not have a CSA program in your community, talk to a local community service organization about starting one. Some are managed by local food co-ops or service organizations, while farmers often manage their own CSAs, too. If you know a farmer, determine if they're offering a CSA program, and if they're not, give them a hint! These programs benefit just about everybody involved, and they're easy to start and maintain, so there's no reason why your community should do without one.
CSA Apprenticeship in Whittier
Even if you feel you can not afford to belong to Whittier CSAs, don't despair. Many farmers are offering apprenticeships for people who can't afford to purchase a membership for a season. You work in the fields for a pre-determined amount of time each week, and find out more about the business of agriculture, and you receive a share of the crops in return. Now that's a win-win situation for everyone!
During a time when we worry about the quality of our food, how far it's traveled, and how long it's been sitting in a warehouse before it finally arrived at the supermarket, these novel programs can bring a little more peace of mind about where dinner's coming from and teach you new skills at the same time.
Even if you don't want to work in an apprenticeship, you can usually visit the farm and actually see where your next meal is coming from, and that's a very good feeling. So, help a farmer, feed your family better, and save money by joining Whittier CSA in your area.