Image via: Lindsay_NYC on Flickr.com
Several (make that almost 1,000 this year) industrious high school students, with the help of a very involved teacher, have created their own Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program, which raises money for the high school, for farmers and for the students themselves. The Sacramento News & Review reports that this program, called the Fresh Producers Program, not only brings in money for each group but is encouraging the community to eat better, fresher local produce.Thousands of students across the area will soon be selling bags of fresh produce to the community at just $10 a bag. Of that, $7 will go back to the farmer, $1 goes to administrating the program and $2 goes into the pocket of the student or to their student activity. In addition, ten percent of each sale goes to a scholarship fund to then help students pay for college or future career education. The hope is that roughly 24,000 bags of produce will be distributed throughout the area each week. If so, almost $168,000 will go to farmers each week, and $48,000 will go towards funding student activities. The bags contain roughly 7-8 pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables. For the consumer, each bag includes a helpful list of recipes and preparation ideas so the meals don't become routine and so you figure out how to cook those "weird," in-season items you've never seen before.
The CSA program, which started last year, already has the support of several larger organizations that want to see it grow. The California Endowment, Kaiser Permanente, Spiritual Life Center, and Sutter Medical Center Foundation, among others, have all given seed money to start Fresh Producers programs in area high schools. Currently the distribution sites and times are limited, so hopefully as more schools join on and the network expands, it will become easier for the community to get involved. Hey, maybe one day it'll be so popular that they'll even have a fleet of mobile bicycle units that deliver the bags door to door - delivering fresh food and getting a workout at the same time. Win, win and win.
If you'd like to get involved, or get in on the good food, you can find the group online at :Fresh Producers
More on Community Supported Agriculture
CSA Organic Produce Locator
I'm a CSA Member - Now What?
Be Wise and Join a CSA
Why Try Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)?
Biofuel Coop Creates CSA