Hudson Valley Parent

HVP - April 2014

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22 Hudson Valley Parent n April 2014 fresh local produce, my children have learned very healthy eating habits and even in college under- stand the importance of fresh local produce and seek out the farmers markets," she says. Oggenfuss, whose children are 4 and 1, agrees. "I feel like I'm giving my kids an advantage, not only in serving them organic food, but that they will know that food doesn't come from a gro- cery store," she says. "It comes from a farm. They pick and eat their own fruits and veggies right in the field. They're excited to sit down at dinner and proudly tell their dad that they helped pick those green beans." Because members never know from week to week which vegetables they will get and in what quantity, they get to expand their palates and culinary skills. "I learned to pickle, make jelly, and freeze veggies so we've been using the share still in the winter," says Briana Maloney, who joined Kelder's Farm in Kerhonkson last year. Maloney, also of Kerhonksen, says her 3-year-old has developed a taste for kale chips because of the quantity of kale her family received as part of their share. Brooks, too, says her family has been exposed to new vegetable choices. "I have learned to can and preserve the produce so that we can enjoy it all year." Good for community Joining a CSA is also a chance to expand your community and get to know your farmers. Oggenfuss says that the sense of community is one of the reasons that she has been returning to her CSA for 10 years. "I love exchanging recipes in the pickup line, the end-of-the-year potluck, and letting the kids play at the farm." Lastly, for those parents who struggle with getting a wiggly toddler into a shopping cart while avoiding a meltdown in every aisle, CSA members say the scheduled pickups are often enjoyable for children. Some farms that offer CSA shares even offer special incentives for kids. Kelder's Farm includes a free pass for their jumping pillow with the cost of the share. "It be- came my Tuesday afternoon ritual with my toddler to go to spend time on the jumping pillow, feed the an- imals, and pick up our share," says Maloney. Splitting shares Though there are many bene- fits, those who purchase shares do acknowledge that there are some drawbacks. First, since you don't get to choose the vegetables that were grown, members sometimes receive an abundance of vegetables that they don't enjoy. "I often give some away, but Huguenot Street Farm in New Paltz offers unlimited "U-Pick" to their shareholders, and their vegetable season lasts for 22 weeks. Visit for a complete list of CSA farms in the Hudson Valley. CSA (Continued from Page 21)

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