CSA Week 15

This Week’s Harvest

Escarole harvest

Farm News

We’ve been involved with the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) since Mile Creek’s inception and I’ve brought up the nonprofit’s work several times in the blog over the years. The past couple of years we’ve become more involved in another nonprofit that also seeks to support small farms like ours called FairShare CSA Coalition. This 30 year old organization focuses its work on CSA farms and is based out of Wisconsin and has served the upper midwest in the past. This year it is expanding into Ohio and yesterday we hosted FairShare’s first farmer gathering!  

Rain held off for a farm tour with fellow vegetable farmers

Over 15 years ago we interned on a farm in Northern Illinois and through that internship were able to visit several farms in the region. And a couple winters ago Ben and a fellow farmer in our co-op headed out to Wisconsin to visit with some larger CSA farms and see their systems. We’ve known for awhile Wisconsin has a vibrant CSA scene but I didn’t realize the extent of what was happening behind the scenes to make things happen for these farms. 

FairShare offers support for both farmers and consumers.  There are conferences and trainings to help farmers be better growers, business owners, and employers.  Through partnerships with community institutions such as churches and food pantries, FairShare offers reduced cost CSA subscriptions to low income households. Another interesting program FairShare helped implement is the health insurance rebate that CSA households can qualify for with participating health insurance companies in Wisconsin. 

Ben and I were really excited a couple years ago when FairShare reached out to Ben to be on a Farmer Advisory Committee as they strategized how to expand the organization. In May of this year FairShare hired a Program Manager for Ohio. It was fun to host the first event in Ohio just shy of 2 years from that initial contact. We gathered with farmers from all over the state, toured the farm, had round table discussions on managing everything from employees and burnout to crops and fertilizer. Of course we ended with some cantaloupe and vanilla ice cream. (If you haven’t tried this combo yet you should!) 

Showing our harvest conveyor during the tour

We are looking forward to the work FairShare is going to do in Ohio! To learn more about the organization check out https://www.csacoalition.org/about-us

Recipes 

Spaghetti Squash with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

Escarole, Celery and Potato Soup

Meatloaf (serve with mashed potatoes)

Lentil Loaf (serve with mashed potatoes)

Coming Up Next Week (our best guess…) Broccoli, Kale, Carrots, Tomatoes, Escarole, Salad, Honeynut Squash, Delicata Squash, Parsley and more!

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