Another Community Supported Agriculture Option in NC

With spring coming we’re looking forward to another season with The Produce Box. We found it to be a great buy for us – not only saving money, but improving our family’s menu with fresh local produce. We paid the annual enrollment fee ($18) and we’re already thinking of how we’re going to plan our meals around the weekly deliveries.

This weekend we were chatting with friends and they were speaking about a program that they’ve signed up for, Carolina Grown, that offers a similar service with produce, meat, dairy, and more.

These programs offers something slightly different than the typical CSA. They are wonderful ways to get fresh food in a sustainable manner. It’s even delivered right to your door, making it incredibly convenient.

There are several benefits to this model:

  • No upfront fees: Families don’t have to pay for the whole season upfront (though Carolina grown does offer that option). Enrollment fees for the year cover containers for deliveries and are less than $20.
  • Affordable food: Having already used the Produce Box, I’ve seen the value of buy the weekly deliveries; we got plenty of food for our money. This season The Produce Box offers a smaller box for feeding 1-2 people, which is a better fit for us.
  • No long term commitments: You can skip your weekly deliveries, which is handy when you’re on vacation or perhaps still working through last deliveries.

Programs like these can be incredibly powerful, not only for the families signing up for the program, but also for farmers and businesses in the area.

Carolina Grown has a point system that they use for orders. You pay weekly, monthly, or yearly and spend them as you see fit. The Produce Box is a bit more straight forward with weekly payments.

Thoughts on Community Supported Agriculture

I’m happy to see more options in our area for local food and we’re looking at Carolina Grown for picking up meats and local specialty items. How about you- what options are in your area?

Source: Community Support Agriculture (CSAs) in North Carolina
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