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Eating Local in February

Posted 2/18/2020 12:37pm by Colleen Quiram.

Have you been using any of the frozen goodies from your CSA share this winter? This past week I made another batch of pasta sauce using my frozen tomatoes and some Sausage & Kale soup using the frozen chopped kale from this past summer.

While I miss our own produce (I happen to think Jerry & Crew grow some of the best produce in the state, but maybe I’m biased?) I am still trying to eat local and support other area farmers when I can! The Coborns store near me in Albertville does a fantastic job stocking Minnesota Grown produce in the winter, including Revol Greens, Bushel Boy Tomatoes, Parsnips, Carrots, and Alfalfa Sprouts. Yes, these products will be more expensive than the produce grown in Mexico or California but purchasing these items help to support Minnesota farmers!

We are 4 short months away from the start of our CSA program – are you signed up yet? Now that I have my first CSA season under my belt, I am excited to get year two rolling with some changes to our program. I read each and every one of the survey responses we received (438, Wow!) and a common theme was ‘it’s just too much!’ which tells me two things – I need to do a better job helping you use your share, and maybe we need to have a slightly smaller share for smaller households. So, we are introducing the Mini Share for 2020 and it is off to a good start! The new Mini Share isn’t for everyone however, as you will receive not only less quantity, but also less variety in your share.

What does that mean?

It means you might miss out on a melon, some beets and beans, or maybe peppers and tomatoes. Each week we will look at our available produce and see what we can provide without overwhelming smaller households and wasting food by giving you more than you can use.

Did you know over 40% of the food grown in the USA is wasted? We are a sustainability focused farm, and that number is hard for us to see. Some of that food waste happens long before it reaches the consumer, about 10%, but the majority of it happens at the retail and consumer levels. As a farm we can always grow more, and provide more, but if you are throwing it away because we are giving you too much in your share then we need to make some changes. This year that change for us is adding the Mini Share.  While I know that we all get busy, I'd like to encourage you to eat more from the earth, and less from a box, can, or restaurant.

This season I ask that you partner with me as I help you use that share each week, whether it be Family or Mini. I will do my best to provide you with the tools you need to utilize everything in that box; recipes, storage information, and meal ideas. Together we can make the most of all the wonderful produce Jerry & Crew have to offer, and waste less!