Thanks to a growing emphasis on local food, people without gardens can more easily find fresh food. Amanda Tedrow, a Cooperative Extension agent, suggests farmers’ markets and community-supported agriculture alternatives to your local chain grocery store.
“With a farmers’ market, you are in touch with the producer and know the farmer,” said Tedrow, who works with both the farmers’ market and CSAs in Athens-Clarke County. “They provide communities with a place to come together and enjoy fresh produce and other items. Often the markets also provide cooking demonstrations or educational events.”
Community-supported agriculture is another way to get fresh vegetables-by the boxful. A CSA typically consists of a group of individuals who support a farm, which creates a partnership between the consumers and the farmers.
“With a CSA, you pay the farmer a membership fee at the beginning of the year, and then he or she can invest accordingly in what they need,” said Tedrow. “CSAs help foster a connection between the consumer and his food. Often, you can actually visit the farm and see firsthand where your money is going.”
Typically, members of the CSA pick up a box of produce from the farm or at a drop-off location each week.