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photo We have all struggled with the slippery slopes of the food pyramid; certainly, incorporating those 5-to-9 servings of fruits and vegetables daily would improve our health, but good intentions alone are often not enough to change eating habits. Shopping in the grocery store requires thousands of decisions, and all too often habit wins out over health. Facing the prospect of making good, i.e. healthy, choices aisle after aisle and week after week can seem a Herculean feat. Fresh or fast? Asparagus or oven-ready? Nutrition or nachos? Knowledge gives way to impulse, resolution to resignation.

Community Supported Agriculture, a program in which the consumer purchases a subscription for a season’s worth of produce from a local farmer, provides a solution by successfully marrying healthy food with effective action. This one-time decision, made well out of the withering fire of tempting advertising and immediate hungers, not only erases the need for weekly debates in the grocery aisles but also provides a ready-made solution to including more vegetables and fruits in the diet.

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Read experiences of actual subscribers: Subscribers to CSA frequently find that always having a variety of fresh local produce in the house inspires them to incorporate the vegetables into their diet, including new and unusual ones. “Things are going well and we are becoming rabbits with the great greens and veggies,” one subscriber comments. Another adds, “Protecting our environment and eating healthy make us feel so much better. The produce has forced us to learn more about the vegetables and how to prepare them for our family.”

Besides expanding individual diets and promoting good health, locally-grown vegetables boast the extra benefits of superior flavor and nutrition. One family says, “We have been enjoying your harvest immensely. My son, who is 20 months, has begun to say ‘delicious,’ thanks to you.” Another enthuses, “[The] best part about picking up my stuff is the smell that fills my car for even a short drive home. The arugula I brought home Thursday was intoxicating.”

Another subscriber concludes, “We love the variety, the delivery, and the fact that it's organic. We eat more healthfully now and will be sad in November when we have to go back to grocery store produce.”

CSA programs are springing up all over the country. Check to see where there's one in your neighborhood at http://www.kretschmannfarm.com .


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