Monday, May 23, 2016

Sixth Street Community Center CSA launches for the summer/fall

Here are more details via the Center's website:

The Sixth Street CSA has been in existence since 1996, and our members consistently have access to some of the freshest and best quality produce available. From June to November, our partner farms, Hepworth Farms in Ulster County, New York, and Catalpa Ridge Farm in Sussex County, New Jersey, provide over 200 varieties of fruits, vegetables, and herbs.

At Sixth Street, we believe that all neighborhood residents should have access to fresh, organic, local produce, regardless of their level of income. Our CSA operates on a sliding scale model, and member fees are determined based on the income level of your household. This sliding scale model is made possible in part thanks to a generous grant from Wholesome Wave.

CSA pick-ups are every Tuesday from 5pm-9pm at Sixth Street Community Center, located at 638 E Sixth Street between Avenue B and C.

Learn more about how to take part by visiting the Center's website or calling (212) 677-1863.


Scuba Diva said...

I did this CSA several years ago, when the only farmer participating was Catalpa Ridge farm in New Jersey. He had a particularly bad growing season that year, which is why I'm happy to see the 6th Street Community Center still working with him; I would guess he's rebounded and flourished. (Rich Sisti, the farmer, is an extremely nice guy.)

I don't know about anyone else, but I find that for my purposes CSAs don't work well; the variable amount of food snowballs to a huge amount, and I'm the only person in my household eating it, meaning I'm the only person eating it, and a lot of it goes to waste—or compost—since I don't know much about canning and preserving techniques, and the huge amount of food by the end of the growing season is hard to store.

Anonymous said...

Wow Scuba Diva that was a long time ago you were part of the CSA. I have been a CSA member for 8 years and I was the CSA Coordinator for two. Richard Sisti will forever be a 6th Street farming friend but almost all the veggies 6th street gets in the summer are from Hepworth Farms. Amy Hepworth and her team also provide veggies for the Park Slope Food Co-Op and Whole Foods. Her farm has been a success year after year and we are especially excited when her delicious kales come in as well as those beautiful heirloom tomatoes she is known for.
CSA's can be a great way to get yourself eating more veggies and trying new vegetables that maybe you have never had before. For some people this is exciting and for others it is a challenge. As coordinator I tried to facilitate a dialog among members to discuss the many ways they overcome these challenges and to share recipes for some of the lesser know veggies.
I encourage all folks in the community to give it one season and see how it goes. 6th Street offers half shares and many folks go into shares with friends.
Lastly and most important is a CSA is a way for smaller organic farmers to create a business model where investors (CSA members) put the money up at the beginning of a growing season and members reap the rewards throughout the harvest. Sometimes when mother nature has other plans the rewards are few but other times the bounty is plentiful. In either case the farmer can rest easy that they may not have to throw in the towel on all their hard work if things don't go their way.
If anyone has questions the new CSA Coordinator Mike is an amazing and friendly guy who will be happy to talk.

Scuba Diva said...

Just a note to Lee:

I agree CSAs can work well for a lot of people, particularly those with families and/or lots of people to feed, but for my purposes food co-ops like the 4th street food co-op provide an amazing range of produce, with the plus that you're able to pick and choose what you take home. (One big hit has been gherkins, called "mouse melons" by one of our members.) Vanessa Liu, head of the produce working group at 4th street, has been working with our produce vendors for several years, and is skilled at selecting the best of the best.

I agree with you that the CSA model can help fund a struggling farmer and help him build on success; that's what I mentioned about Rich Sisti, and why I was happy to see that he's still in the game. The few times I've done CSAs, though, they just haven't worked for me, and that's largely because I don't have a family and don't go to pot lucks—nor do I have a lot of refrigerator/freezer space.

Anonymous said...

Scuba Diva, Love that you mentioned the 4th Street co-op...also a great resource for those looking to eat better. I gotta try those mouse melons.