Thursday, May 1, 2008

La Cañada Valley Sun: Around Town: Community Sponsored Agriculture

La Cañada Valley Sun: La Cañada Flintridge, California

Around Town:
Now she needs recipes
By Anita Susan Brenner

Whenever I go to Adat Ari El Synagogue, I know that something wonderful will happen. But this time, I was perplexed.

What is Community Supported Agriculture? I asked the rabbi.

A few days later, the e-mail arrived.

Community Supported Agriculture, or CSA, refers to local farms from which individuals commit to buy seasonal produce. Whether we are concerned with our personal health, the economic strength of local farms, or the well being of our world, joining a CSA enables us to help ourselves, others and our world.

I continued reading. advertisement

On a weekly or bi-weekly basis, the farm delivers a box of fresh produce directly from the field to people; the amount is plentiful with a mix of greens, vegetables and fruit and in many cases the farms are organic.

The next day, our daughter came over. “I might join a CSA,” I said, nonchalantly.

“How did you hear about CSAs?” said Rachel.

Busted! (Note to self — you can’t fool your kids.) “Rabbi Bernhard is starting a CSA,” I confessed.

“He’s so cool,” said Rachel.

“But how is this different than our local farmer’s market?” I asked.

Rachel explained that a CSA is a way to invest in local farms and to make them sustainable. If the farm has a good week, we get lots of vegetables. If it has a bad week, we get less.

The farm in question is called Tierra Miguel. It has 85 acres, is named for an archangel and is run by a nonprofit foundation in the Pauma Valley. Their goal is to connect the city with the farm.

“I’ll go in on it with you,” said Rachel.

This was beginning to sound like a win-win situation. I could stay ahead of the shifting global market system, get lots of vegetables and pretend to be au courant. Not to mention the religious benefits. Instead of buying groceries, I would be investing in a farm. Like the verse quoted in the rabbi’s e-mail, And the Lord God took the human set him down in the garden of Eden to till it and tend it. Genesis 2:15.

Now, if only I had a good recipe for beets, kale and zucchini


ANITA SUSAN BRENNER moved to La Cañada before it was hip. Back then, there were a feed stores up and down Foothill Boulevard, from Tujunga to La Crescenta, all the way to La Cañada. She invites you to send your recipes for summer vegetables to anitasusan.brenner@ for possible publication in this column.

No comments: