Farm News: What do buzz words really mean about the food you are eating? We heard recently that demand for “local” is outstripping demand for “organic”, and will continue to gain in the coming years. This concerns us, because when used without the term organic, “local” almost 100% of the time, means “conventional farmed” which means “lots of chemicals used!”. And yes, chemicals used nearby! “local” and “sustainable” are good words. These words are often used by farmers, restaurants and grocery stores to get customers attention and make them feel a connection to their food. Often it is implied to mean organic. But as an UNREGULATED term, it does not need to mean anything, really. Many chemical-conventional farms use the term “sustainable” when selling their produce. So take this into account when you make your purchasing decisions – as you did by joining our CSA.
People select “local” in part because they want to supporting their local community or helping to reduce air and water pollution. At a “local” debate (actually one mile from our farm) last week a candidate for Supervisor (Mayor) of our town of Riverhead claimed that they were going to help local farmers by lobbying state and federal government to allow pesticides and water soluble fertilizers that were banned for use on Long Island. Why did the candidate make this statement? Because she “wants to support local”. However, we live on top of an aquifer that is our drinking water supply. And our ground water seeps into the Peconic Bay, Long Island Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. Although the only people who see these chemicals being used, usually, are the farmer and the chemical salesperson, after several rain episodes, seasons or years they are seen by everyone, in the form of water tests showing contamination, fish die offs or algae blooms. So no thank you to this type of support!
We do not use water soluble fertilizers of synthetic pesticides and distribute our “local organic” farm goods within 75 miles of our farm. We just received our updated Organic Certificate (from the Northeast Organic Farming Association of NY) for 2015-16. Thank you for supporting our farm!
Share items for Nov 4 and 7 (best guess):
Mixed cabbage, 1 head
Red and green tatsoi, 1 bunch
Beets, 1 bunch or 1 pound
Fennel, 1 large head
Kale, 1 bu different types and colors
Garlic, 1 small
Swiss chard, 1 bu
Fruit share: apples, 4 lbs
Egg share: ½ dozen pastured eggs