What is CSA?
CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, or , how to have a direct relation with your food through your nearest farm. It’s a concept that originated in Japan and Germany during the 60’s, and has had a constant evolution. Solitude CSA offers weekly baskets of fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables grown in the spirit of natural farming and permaculture, which we believe, due to the techniques we employ give a healthier and tastier product than produce that may simply follow the norms laid down by organic certification. We do our best to provide a healthy diversity of produce but the consumer should be ready to accept what is in season. Like this the farmer and consumer can really work together. The basket is paid for in advance helping the farm to develop the crops of that season and making sure the participant makes a clear commitment to the project. Farmers and consumers working together!
The CSA is a great way to support the need for local food. It’s a way to know and understand which foods grow in your area, it is a way to build community and of course to eat healthy. By participating in the CSA you actively protect the environment by eating food that has zero food miles, why do you need to buy potatos form 600 kms away, if your local farmer is growing alternatives such as tapioca and sweet potato?
CENTRAL FUND Lunch Scheme
- 3 Lunches / week @ Solitude Organic Farm Café
- as your Central Fund Scheme
Full Month Lunch Scheme
- Lunch daily – Monday to Saturday
- & 4 complimentary smoothies or ice creams in a month.
- @ Rs150 per lunch
Customized Lunch Scheme
- 12 or more lunches /month
- get a smoothie or an ice cream complimentary
- @ Rs150 /lunch
Lunch Gift Card
- 10 lunches
- get a juice complimentary with every lunch
- @ Rs200/lunch (Total Rs2000)
Where is the CSA?
In Solitude Farm, Auroville (near Pondicherry), Tamil Nadu, India. 9843319260
What CSA is Not!
It is not a supermarket, where you choose what you eat, it is a way to eat seasonally and support the farm through your actions, and it means trust. We will give you a big diversity and the best products that we have. We don’t like to throw food in the garbage, so , we ask our costumers to pick up the basket on time, or inform us ASAP if there are some changes. It is not cheap food; the baskets have a fair price and high quality, but we don’t like to be used just like a cheap resource. We are doing this to build community and to take people closer to the food they are eating.
What CSA is About:
Community, Health, Ecology, Families, Fun, Learning, Commitment, Building community, Alternative economic systems, Culture and Politics.
The ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings.
Masanobu Fukuoka, The One-Straw Revolution
Small is beautiful
The sweet potato has enormous nutritional value, being low in sodium, saturated fat and cholesterol, a good source of dietary fiber, vitamin B6 and potassium, and a very good source of vitamins A, C, and manganese. It is available from Auroville farms in the period from January to March which means there is minimal transport in getting the food from the field to your plate. This year in Solitude, starting in August, we grew four different fields of sweet potato. Two fields, which funny enough were the last two we planted, were fantastic in size and taste, while the other two had lots of smaller tubers but they were equally good in taste. We have been giving these small sweet potatoes in the CSA baskets and have heard how tasty they were from the participants. We have also been serving them daily to our guests and volunteers at Solitude organic restaurant. Sadhana Forest and Center Guest House also take regularly and again the verdict is that small is tasty! So far we have harvested around 300 kilos of big and small sweet potatoe and we have close to 100 kilos left to harvest.
We have a small problem however, the smaller sweet potatoes are very difficult to move in New Pour Tous, as the conception is that sweet potatoes are only good if they are big. This Saturday I gave the weekly tour of Solitude, and during a discussion on nutrition one guest asked me “why do the local villagers prefer white rice when brown is better for you?”
In the book The One Straw Revolution, Masanobu Fukuoka discusses weather it is permissible that man use chemicals in the fields. He describes the miracles of nature and thus fertility that are destroyed by chemical application. He suggests that philosophers and artists join the discussion to see weather man has the right to use chemicals.
The sweet potato is a small matter, just a farmer wanting people to understand that it tastes good and that we need to be educated about what is good for us – food that is grown locally, without transport, without chemicals. I brought Nagamuthu, a local farmer who works with us at Solitude, to help me with the delivery the other day and he was very angry that good food should be rejected because of size! But the consumer directs the market. We have all the crazy stuff on our shelves because we demand it. The irony is that humans choose foods that require chemicals and transportation with fossil fuels, but they are unhealthy for both us and the environment. Consider also the ever-diminishing gene pools due to use of hybrid seeds (needed to grow the perfect round, red tomato). All this is due to a lack of understanding about our food. We search for solutions for our broken ecology yet the answers are right in front of us. Please eat small sweet potatoes!