Sign up for fresh local produce

Terrace fresh food service offers local produce and more served in boxes to those who sign up.

If you’re interested in fresh produce on your table, then the Kalum Community School Society has the answer.

Everyone is invited to sign up for the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) project that’s starting its second year.

“We want at least 20 people signed up to get those delicious fruits and vegetables,” says  Agatha Jedrzejczyk of the Kalum Community School Society.

In one week last year, members received local basil, new beet greens, kale, zucchini, 1.5 pounds of new potatoes, raspberries, lettuce, cherries, one pound of rhubarb, cherry tomatoes and a dozen eggs.

The next week was lettuce, lemon balm, cherries, rutabaga, beets, beans – yellow, green and broad – and cucumbers, garlic and carrots.

“There’s no chance there will be no produce. Some years are better than others,” says Jedrzejczyk.

For one payment of $500 or two payments of $250, due before March 15, you get 17 weeks of fresh produce, which also can include lip balm, jams and relish. It comes to about $30 a week, and if the pay-up-front price sounds like a lot, people can get together with a friend or two and split the box of produce.

The price is negotiated with the farmers and producers.

Last year, there were 17 producers involved with about a dozen people enjoying the fruits, and vegetables, of their labour.

If more people sign up, there will be more money and then more producers can sign up.

For example, Jedrzejczyk says if 100 people signed up, then that would add up to a  $50,000 budget.

“It spreads the risk of a bad season, and shares the bounty of an exceptionally good growing season,“says Jedrzejczyk. “And the food is fresh and delicious.”

The advantage of paying in advance is then the farmers and producers know how much they can sell and they will grow more, she says.

“It will stimulate bigger local food production or even the emergence of new farmers,” says Jedrzejczyk. “That is the goal of CSA! The sad part of the farmers market is that farmers grow only the amount they know they will sell.”

So far, there are five paid members and two more have signed up. For more details, including how to sign up, see Community Calendar under PSAs on page 12.