A Summer of CSA

This isn’t my usual outdoor adventure kind of post, but it’s been one I’ve wanted to write for a while and during this time of COVID-19, it’s never been more apparent the importance of local food supplies.

Last summer I signed up for a CSA through Jubilee Farm, a family-owned organic farm in the Snoqualmie Valley of Washington. What’s a CSA you ask? It stands for “Community Supported Agriculture” and simply put, you pay a farm for a share of what they grow during a season. This model provides farms with operating capital up front, which keeps them sustainable, lowers food waste, and reduces the carbon emissions required to transport and refrigerate food long distances. In exchange, you receive fresh, locally grown, seasonal produce and more.

My latest bounty, picked up fresh today!

I’d long considered signing up for a CSA and what finally pushed me to do so was my volunteer work through Conservation Northwest’s Wildlife Monitoring Project. Maybe that seems like an interesting leap, but since joining Conservation Northwest I’ve become aware of so many different ways to support conservation: from practicing leave no trace principles, reducing plastic consumption, and supporting the preservation of wild spaces and habitats, all the way to supporting local food consumption.

I gotta say, I am absolutely thrilled right now more than ever to have a weekly supply of fresh produce! If you’re here in the Seattle area, I would strongly consider a CSA through Jubilee Farm. They also supply meat, born and grazed locally in Carnation. Due to recent high demand, they’ve already filled their spring session, but their summer session is still open.

Not local to Seattle? Many farms across the nation offer CSA plans so find one in your local community to support.

I’ve become a huge believer in community supported agriculture. Here are all the reasons I love being a partner with Jubilee Farm as well as photos of some of the weekly delicious food I’ve received.

A CSA doesn’t require you to be a master cook.

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not a culinary master. In fact, I consider a great meal one that takes less than 20 minutes to fix. I was worried that signing up for a CSA would mean I’d end up with a ton of mystery produce that would require a lot of prep and cooking. In fact, I’ve found the opposite to be true! 

Jubilee supplies diverse, usable produce and they include a brochure each week with recipes. I’ve been able to chop up easy salads, sauté and steam, and even make hearty vegetable mashes with butter and salt. Thanks to Jubilee I’ve also learned that boiling garlic in olive oil makes a fantastic confit for almost anything.

Share sizes for everyone.

Jubilee offers different share sizes based on needs, with a full share good for a family of four or two adults who love veggies. I sign up for the summer half share and it’s a perfect size for a single. Occasionally I donate an item or two to a friend if needed. I’m currently in their 3/4 share winter session and it’s perfect. 

Local depot delivery.

Jubilee also provides a weekly delivery service to depots around the Seattle area and a few on the eastside for a small additional fee. This is highly convenient if you can’t easily travel to their farm. I pick up my fresh produce every week a few miles from my home. It’s fantastic! 

U-Pick events.

Jubilee also invites members out to U-Pick events, which include strawberries and other seasonal specials.

Strawberry U-Pick at Jubilee Farm. These strawberries were heavenly!

Great prices.

Their prices are also very reasonable. My summer half share and 3/4 winter share average out to be $25-$30/week with the depot delivery option. 

Healthy eating! 

Since joining Jubilee, my diet has become healthier and more varied, I have a steady supply of fantastic seasonal produce, and I feel great about supporting local community and agriculture. The food tastes so much better than anything I can get in the store. Because of the CSA I now love kohlrabi (yum!) and I eat and enjoy a ton of root vegetables I’d never even heard of before.

Jubilee Farm has completely transformed my eating.

Here’s a sampling of some of the incredible farm fresh food I’ve received from Jubilee in the last year. Soooo good! Since my summer of CSA, I’ve signed up for more seasons and I’m now a huge believer in community supported agriculture. It’s good for the environment, it’s good for farms, and it’s good for us!