Thursday, July 10, 2008

Let's start a C.S.A farm in Puerto Rico!


OK, I promise, no more passive p...& moaning about lack of fresh produce in PR.
I know that, come September, I'll become seriously overextended workwise, but during the rest of July and August my obligations won't require more of my time that 20, max 30 hrs/week.

Thus I can DO something - even if only on a small scale - to help improve availability of fresh produce on the West coast...... by starting a C.S.A farm.

C.S.A stands for a Community Supported Agriculture and is a concept where consumers buy up front shares in the output of the farm.

That allows a farmer to know his/her income is secure for the season, come drought and/or high water, because consumers share in the risks. It also allows him/her to start farming again ( I know of farms in Las Marias area, which have not been farmed for years, as their owners tried to make a living working elsewhere ), buy seeds, equipment, implements.

That allows a consumer to be assured of a preagreed upon share of all - or part - of the produce grown ( and of meat or dairy if produced on the farm as a part of its concept) delivered to him/her - or picked up at the farm - weekly or twice weekly during the entire producing season, which in PR is all year round.

Now, I'll be honest with you: I'd rather start a C.S.A in an expat rich part of the Dominican Republic, than in relatively expat - and seasonally tourist - rich West Coast of Puerto Rico, because expats in DR are predominantly continental Europeans, while expats in PR are almost exclusively Americans.... and Europeans not only eat far more fresh produce than Americans do, they are also far more accustomed to - and comfortable with - all kinds of cooperative endavors.

But, living in PR, I'll do it here. Anyone game to sign up as for the core group of shareholders?

Come on, join me. (please email me soon).
Produce from the CSA will not only be a lot fresher and a lot more versatile, it should also be cheaper than store bought produce in PR.

6 comments:

nickandmiri said...

Minerva: I read in July's issue of Rincon's El Coqui (available online: http://www.coquirincon.com/) that a CSA is starting/has started locally. The contact email for information is siembratresvidas@gmail.com
Miri

Minerva said...

That's great news! Thanks for sharing with me. I'll be in Rincon tomorrow and Tuesday and will try to talk to El Coquis editor (she is such a lovely and knowledgable lady!) and contact the CSA.

Vicious Summer said...

That is so funny that I read this post today...At dinner we were talking about a very similar idea (in TX, not PR, and with livestock, not produce). Any how, Stefan and I would be more then happy to take part in a CSA. Let us know if you get any additional info on this. I will check the Coqui when we return to the island (next week)!

Minerva said...

Tes, I got additional info on this from the farmer, Silka (email her - address givrn by miri). She is already distributing baskets of fresh produce every saturday morning at the Natural High. You can still join at any time for the end of the summer season (through August) paying only for remaining weeks and you can join fro the whole fall season. Silka also offers a possibility to buy extra herbs etc. in addition to normal weekly baskets if anybody's interested. I am joining as soon as I get back to the West coast.

Anonymous said...

Minerva,

I've been visiting your blog from the Kruse's link. I enjoy your beautiful pictures of my homeland which make me reminisce quite a bit.

There are many challenges that the farmers in PR have had over the years. However, none of them is as tough as the proliferation of foreign primates (rhesus and patas) in the southwest part of the island. This is a link to an article in today's newspaper:

http://www.elnuevodia.com/diario/noticia/negocios/negocios/cultivando_para_los_monos/435040

I hope the link works for you and that you are able to read it in Spanish. I don't have much hope that the DRNA (local Natural Resources Dept. - Government Agency) will be able to help control this plague.

Thanks for sharing your stories from PR.

Best,

Hamilton

Minerva said...

Thanks for the info and for sharing the link, Hamilton. The article was easy enough to understand (my reading Spanish is far better than my spoken one, thanks to four years of Latin in my European high school) and very interesting.
Glad you enjoy my pictures. :-)