The Local Farm to Home Connection
Photography and Text by Lawrence White
When we visit the market, we quickly discover we are facing different levels of difficulty in finding the foods we want or need. Yet, at the same time, we hear of farmers who are being forced to plow under crops and dump dairy products because they cannot get to the market. In too many cases the supply and demand chain has been damaged but we hear it is not beyond repair or adaptation. So, what is happening to protect the food supply? Will there be food at all?
To answer this question, I approached the Agricultural Stewardship Association (ASA) for answers. The ASA is a group that many of you who read this article will be familiar with. They have saved nearly 30,000 acres of upstate NY farmland from development and continue to move forward to preserve more farmland in spite of the challenges that we all face today.
When I asked Katie Jilek of the ASA what consumers need to know about what is happening with our local food supply right now and how can they help and get involved, she responded, “I think one of the simplest things consumers can do is shorten their food chain; buy local, buy direct from a farmer, drink milk, get a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) share, do what you can to support the farms around you. There is a misconception that its less affordable, but sometimes just the opposite is true. We know that many people are not financially in a position to buy everything locally or that they do not have the resources nearby to do so. We are fortunate to live in an area where it’s easier to do so. That is part of the reason ASA's work is so important. If the people who can, do, it will make a difference.”
Ms. Jilik continued, “Farmers are used to adapting to conditions as they evolve. They are directly connected to nature, so they are always adapting to their working conditions. In this case, we find farmers are banding together and offering direct to home services that allow for the freshest and best local foods at computer click away.”
Moxie Ridge Farm is one of the farms to offer Home Delivery
Owner of Moxie Ridge Farm, Lee Hennessy has set up an online-order/ home-delivery system he named "Moxie Box." He says that they offer, "hand-selected products grown and raised by local family farms working responsibly with their animals and land. We offer free delivery within our active delivery areas and our process is completely customizable, so the customer has plenty of options. The minimum order is $30 but it should be noted that the products available on Moxie Box are extremely seasonal and change week to week, therefore, order cutoffs are in place to ensure that fresh produce is harvested to order."
To see the products offered at Moxie Box click here.
To see more farms involved in the CSA process click here.
(Note: We will spotlighting more farms in upcoming articles.)