With the arrival of nice, sunny weather comes the option of fruits and vegetables from our local farmers.
Saint Louis University hopes to bring local products by offering a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program to the Fresh Gathering’s Harvest Cafe in the Allied Health Building on the medical campus. Its fourth season will start on May 17 and run through October 25. The CSA program began four years ago as a graduate’s research project.
The program works through a membership, where an individual or family will commit to join the program and pay for the membership. The member can either pay up front or in installments with cash, credit or even Billiken Bucks.
The share is divided into half a share at $550 or a full share at $850. Money generated from the shares and memberships go to finance the labor of the CSA managers involved, a small profit and lastly, back to the farmers.
Once a member has decided on an installment plan, she will be able to pick up produce every Friday at the Fresh Gatherings Cafe between 3:30 to 6:00 p.m.
A crate will contain 15 pounds of produce, though the amount depends on the season, since it runs from summer and through part of fall.
Not only do members receive the benefit of healthy and locally grown food, which avoids time for exposure for food contamination, but the CSA program provided at Fresh Gatherings differs in sourcing the best of their produce from more than ten local farmers.
At the market, members also have access to other foods, such as locally produced milk, eggs, bread and meat.
Included in the mission of Fresh Gatherings Cafe is to grow awareness of a healthier lifestyle.
The cafe’s newsletter has healthy recipes that incorporate food from that weeks’ share. Graduate students in the nutrition and dietetics program create the recipes.
If looking for a healthier lifestyle or simply wondering how the program works, swing by every Friday at the Allied Health Building on the Medical Campus.