This is the time of year to sign up for a spring-summer CSA (Community Support Agriculture). I really enjoyed participating in and running my own CSA in the past. But it's not for everyone. And by that I mean, regimented eaters who aren't open to the new varieties and variables in food off the farm. You need to be open to trying foods, maybe even some you thought you didn't like. And an adventurous cook who likes to try new recipes.
I think the rewards are obvious. You're getting the freshest, and probably the healthiest, produce and products available (especially when you consider that supermarket broccoli can be 3 months old and eggs a 3 weeks old). Usually the food from the CSA was picked the day before or even that morning . You're helping to preserve farmland by supporting a small farmer, reducing food miles traveled and reducing your food dollars by paying in advance. All these are upright, admirable things. But mostly, you're getting some of the best tasting food around.
Here's a great video with CSA members and farmers discussing the farm subscription program and its benefits. To find a CSA near you just go to LocalHarvest.org and plug in your zip code.
What to expect when you join a CSA