Holistic Nutritionists' love organic food - and we love vegetables. So what could be better than a program that brings us both of those things, right to our front door?
Not many things.
There are a couple great CSA programs in the Okanagan.
"C.S.A. is a program of mutual commitment between a farm and a community of supporters. It links people directly with their source of food, providing them with the most fresh, sustainably produced food; it gives farmers a source of income at their time of highest expense (early spring). Shareholders purchase a share in the season's harvest and receive a weekly package of food."
I've known about CSA boxes for a number of years, but its only recently that I decided to try out our local one here Penticton, BC.
It was kind of a big deal in my house when the blue bin appeared at the door!
When I studied nutrition I dreamed about being able to purchase a box of beautiful, fresh organic food to be delivered to my door, but the price was always too costly in Vancouver, and I was a student. (I didn't have much juggling room... and by 'not much' I meant zero juggling room.)
Flash forward life and we received our first box from LocalMotive, a company run by a farmer based out of Okanagan Falls who has a snazzy team of awesome organic providers that fill the boxes he delivers to his clients once a week.
To your house.
And its REALLY easy to become a client! You just sign up on their website... Early August and I received zucchinis', red peppers, greens, tomatoes, beans, potatoes, squash, apples, peaches and I added some bread into my order from True Grain Bread in Summerland. I ordered a baguette, hoping it would be a remnant memory of my time in Paris. I reveled at the vegetables for awhile, and then cracked the baguette. It was crisp and crunchy on the outside and perfectly chewy, bubbly and soft in the middle!
It was just like European baking, and I was in heaven.
Seriously, in heaven.
When I returned to reality (about 10 minutes later) I got in my car and drove to True Grain in Summerland to introduce myself and thank them.
That's some kind of bread!
It was the best decision I ever made - because I was able to buy another baguette while I was there!
(Really good food can really get under your skin like that.)
It gets real deep.
So, what's the big deal about organic food anyway?
If you haven't heard the news in the last 10 years or so, its kind of a big deal. The problem is that we never used to have to buy food labelled as organic because all of our food was. Before we had fancy machines to farm for us, we used to have Nature grow our food. You know, like re-using seeds (we didn't have a worldwide company patenting seeds - to buy them from) and using old plants/manure to fertilize the land instead of nasty chemicals. Oh, and a lot of sweat. (Now we have machines cut/harvest our food)
So you see this gave our farmers a connection to the land. After the Green agricultural revolution (which didn't actually happen that long ago - started in the 1940s) farmers were needing to grow more food and post-war were able to have new technology to allow them to do that.
This, as with everything else, had its pros and cons. We knew how to grow more food, but flash forward 60 years and the quality of our food is harshly diminished. We have genetically modified foods, which doesn't have enough research backing its long-term safety in humans, we have grains we can't digest (the rates of IBS and gluten sensitivities/intolerances are growing fast) and we have a very sick population. How can we not look at how we are preparing our crops before they get to our plate? There is a direct link to the food we eat and how our immune system functions.
Organic is different.
In organic farming, its all about the soil.
The concept that soil is a living system is fundamental to understanding the principles of organic farming.
These farmers believe there is a link between the health of the soil and the health (and thus, nutrition) of the plants. So restoration, maintenance and enhancing the organisms in the soil is essential to the organic method. Plants grown in strong healthy soil will be stronger themselves, and paired with less fertilizers will make them healthier, making them healthier for us.
Organic farms care for the environment by protecting wildlife and birds, avoiding using agricultural toxins, protecting streams and promoting local food to reduce global transport.
Plus, the produce is healther which = we are healthier!
So why the added cost?
No seriously, you pay for quality.
You pay for quality everywhere. Which running shoe lasts longer, the $10 pair from a big box store, or a $70 pair of Under Armour?
We pay more for quality in our shoes, make-up, cars and houses. Why not our food?
The bigger price = the better quality.
There are flaws yes. We can only do our best though. And for our body, we deserve the best.
Go local and purchase food from Farmers Markets and your local CSA!
(Anything I talk about on my blog is simply things that I myself have enjoyed. I am not associated nor affiliated with this company. I simply promote folks, food & things that I love!)