Collaboration with Rebeca Simpson Holloway
It’s no secret that being GREEN is the new “in” thing to do. Unfortunately, out-of-pocket cost, and overall practicality can often be a big deterrent to fully realizing those aspirations of living a totally eco-friendly life.
So, we’re going to work toward bringing you interesting and easy ways the average parent can bring his or her family a little more in line with the environment. We’re looking to uncover some basic steps to achieving a little more balance with the environment, without busting open your kids’ piggy banks or forcing you to give up the family car in favor of bicycles.
This week we’re going to focus on food.
Let’s face it, there’s always room for improvement when it comes to buying (and eating) the right foods. I’m not going to dive into the semantics of what is or isn’t healthy because that will likely change as the wind blows. But, The Wine Mom and I have been working together to offer some suggestions for scoring fresh, organic produce that won’t drain your checking account.
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)
Basically, consumers can pay a local farmer for fresh, seasonal produce, which can be picked up from the farm, or delivered either to a central neighborhood location, or even directly to your door. Tens of thousands of families have joined CSAs and enjoy the benefits of supporting local farmers while savoring some of the freshest produce available. To learn more or to find one in your area, visit http://www.localharvest.org.
Local Produce Stands and Farmers’ Markets
Most major cities and even small towns offer some form of farmers market and many families view a visit to the market as a form of entertainment. Farmers’ Markets are a great way to expose the little ones to a wide variety of agricultural products they normally wouldn’t find in suburbia. Also, as an added bonus, many farmers are anxious to unload slightly blemished produce at a reduced cost. I scored a huge box of bruised Georgia peaches for $8 at the local produce stand….they made great jam!
Many non-profit, co-op and for-profit delivery services are popping up all over the country. The idea is simple…they provide fresh (usually local) produce and grocery products directly to your door for about the same price, or less than what you’d find at many national chains. You get to shop online and pick the products you want each week (or bi-weekly if you choose). They do all the thumping, sniffing, and squeezing to make sure you get the best product possible. Overall, it’s one of the most affordable and convenient methods to grocery shopping I’ve found!
One such company is called spud! Spud! is currently only available in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, Seattle, Vancouver, Victoria and Calgary, but they’re still worth featuring. Over 50% of their products are organic and they’ve teamed up with The Wine Mom to make grocery shopping easier and more eco-friendly. Sign up at http://www.spud.com with the code MOMFUSE to get $25 off over your first 4 orders. The offer is good until Dec 31, 2009. This offer is great for parents that are short on spare time.
If you aren’t lucky enough to take advantage of Spud! we have a few other delivery options you might find useful. A simple google search will also generate plenty of options we haven’t covered here.
Boise, Idaho area
Sequim, Washington (Olympic peninsula)
Chenango and Madison Counties, New York
Indianapolis and Cincinnati