We are solidly in CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) sign up season. Purchasing a CSA provides a regular box of produce from a local farmer or group of farmers. CSAs are a wonderful way to help young children engage with delicious local produce. They can also give us all an opportunity to try preparing and eating foods we might be unfamiliar with (or might just not purchase at the grocery store)!
This year many farms are selling out of CSA shares fast! Have you gotten a CSA for years, or are you considering one for the first time? If you are in Minnesota, check out Minnesota Grown's CSA Finder to find a CSA with a pick-up site near you.
Consider buying a CSA this season to support your local farmer, and to give kids an amazing local exposure to food. Early care providers commented that a CSA for their kids was "a present from the farmers". For some kids and providers, a CSA provided some new food exposures - ground cherries, rhubarb, and more. One preschooler headed home and asked their parent to purchase the "brown cherries" at the store! Also of note, CSAs give us the chance to interact with whole produce, which can help kids better understand how food grows and where it comes from. Root vegetables with greens attached, peas or edamame in shells, the list goes on. For kids (and adults), this is a great way to understand a bit more about how food grows, and give a direct connection to where it is grown.
If you are an early care provider in St. Paul, reach out to [email protected] for more info on CSA support for early care providers this season.
What are you excited to get in a CSA share this season?