Weekly Farm Update, 21 September 2012

Hi everyone

It seems the days and weeks go faster every year.  Having the youngest two home with chickenpox this week, as well as Matt on a holiday, defenitely made the week go extremely fast!  The result mainly being that I am late with the newsletter (again) and Frank only realised today that the bags of stir fry mix that should have been in both the small eand large veggie bags were still in the chiller in Masterton!  We will make this up to you this coming weeks with some extra vege, apologies!

Your CSA Shares this week:

Fruit Share: 1 kg each of Pacific Rose and Fuji Apples, 2 lemons and 1 Fuerte Avocado.

Small Veggie Share: 3 Brown Onions, 1,2 kg of Agria Potatoes or 1 Celeriac, a bunch of Rapini, a bag of Salad Mix and some Parsley.  Missing: a bag of Stir Fry Mix!

Large Veggie Share: 3 Brown Onions, 1,2 kg of Agria Potatoes or 1 Celeriac, a bunch of Rapini, a bag of Salad Mix, 1 large leek, circa 1 kg of Pumpkin, 2 bulbs of Florence Fennel, a bag of kale, a bunch of Radishes, and some Parsley.  Missing: a bag of Stir Fry Mix!

Caroline Welkin, our CSA member in Upper Hutt, has been using her house as a pick up point and she is keen to grow the CSA in her area. For that reason she has written an article for the local newspaper.  I have copied it here for everyone to enjoy. Please feel free to use if you are keen to grow the CSA in your area.

Seasonal food brings - all year health benefits

By Upper Hutt Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) and healthy happy eater Caroline Welkin

Local vegetable and fruit fan, Caroline Welkin says “I’ve always loved local food. When I heard Wellington region had a CSA, I knew I had found a way to eat a range of seasonal organic produce that I just couldn’t do at home - and support my local community and economy.”

“Since eating this way I have felt healthier than ever before. I had to find out why I was feeling such a huge difference in my well-being, so I asked my grower.”

Farmer Frank Van Steensel shared with me that he uses his decades of study into soil nutrition and soil biology to make the crops generally 30 % more nutritious than standard store bought produce, with healthy, harsh chemical free, fruit and vegetables and crop rotation.

Food generally arrives in Upper Hutt a day after it is picked. Store bought food (grown with pesticide laden modern techniques for appearance and yield) has already lost nutrition in storage and transition, which may be many weeks.”

“When you eat freshly cropped, free of harsh chemicals and fertilisers, grown from super healthy gutsy soil, in season”, says Frank “it is at the peak of it’s ability to feed your body the nutrition it contains. It’s because your food is so good, you feel so good!”

People who grow their own, will always tell you fresh picked tastes finest. CSA is a way for non-growers to eat really well too.

Frank says “The eco-farms are all ecologically managed (BioGro-certified organic), the focus is to grow food packed full of nutrients and essential compounds needed for a healthy human body.”

Upper Hutt now has this local food system (CSA) for fresh produce. It links communities directly to growers. Wairarapa Eco Farms are New Zealands’ first Community Supported Agriculture (CSA).

CSA is also about community. Josje at the farm, keeps Harvest share members in touch with farm visit days and newsletters. She says ”we have fun with members of our CSA community who choose to volunteer and want to learn and contribute to local food production. Some people just eat, and others want to be really involved, we welcome them all.”

If you would like to try out a share of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) there is a pick-up point in Clouston Park.

Learn more at the website www.wefs.co.nz or call Josje on 06 304 8116. You may also book to visit on the next open farm day on 30th of September.

Have a great week,

Josje