Eat Local With Community Supported Agriculture Programs

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Buying local fruits and vegetables that were grown by farmers in New Orleans and surrounding cities has never been easier!

Today, there are farmers markets throughout the city - not just on Saturdays - and more local farms and gardens have started Community Supported Agriculture programs. CSA's provide customers with a seasonal box of food from their farm that contains enough produce to last a family of four for a week. Often times, smaller boxes are offered as well.

Some of the programs require you to pay upfront before you receive the produce, which provides the farm with the steady revenue they need to maintain stable production. Other organizations operate under a pay-as-you-go model.

New Orleans CSA Programs Currently Accepting Members:

Hollygrove Farm & Market is the most popular weekly CSA box in New Orleans, and at $25, it contains produce from many different farmers and food producers throughout Southeastern Louisiana. Hollygrove will deliver to your door or you can visit their store in Hollygrove, where you can buy produce items individually along with many other local food products.

Press Street Gardens, a half-acre urban farm and outdoor learning center that serves the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts, is offering a couple of month-long CSA programs this summer, and their next one runs from June 18-July 16. Participants can choose to purchase one month of veggies ($110), flowers ($72), or both ($175), and have two different pick-up options.

VEGGI Farmer’s Cooperative, is operated and owned by community members of New Orleans East. They offer two different options for their CSA program: Subscription, $260 for 13 weeks ($20 a box), or individual boxes for $25 a week. They provide home deliveries to Orleans Parish (Eastbank only) addresses.

Southbound Gardens, an urban farm that focuses on teaching residents how to grow their own food naturally, also has a couple of CSA options. You can choose from their three-month subscription program ($250), five-week subscription ($90), or just one box ($20). They offer many pick-up options.

Supporting Urban Agriculture, an urban farm that is located in the Lower Ninth Ward, offers a weekly CSA box for $25.

If you would prefer to grow your own food, many of the farms offer workshops as well! You can anticipate finding an event at a farm every weekend in New Orleans now.

Classes & Workshops:

Garden on Mars often hosts Saturday morning workshops. Their popular “Kitchen Box Workshop” teaches participants how to grow 10+ herbs and veggies in a raised garden bed. They have also held classes about how to grow citrus, peanuts, and flowers. Cost: free.

Southbound Gardens holds multiple workshops each month, with a focus geared towards beginning growers. Whether you can only grow food in pots, or you have a yard to build a garden in, Southbound Gardens has a workshop for you. Cost: $10 recommended donation, but no one will be turned away.

If you would like to see an updated calendar that lists all of the urban farming events in New Orleans, please visit my blog Why NOLA Farms.

The Eat Local New Orleans is challenging YOU to go 30 days this June eating only foods grown, caught, or raised within a 200 mile radius of New Orleans to raise awareness of the nutritional, economical, environmental and cultural benefits of eating locally sourced foods. To learn more, visit their website here!

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