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  • May 02, 2019

Fresh produce for local communities

CHA and Farmer Dave's team up to deliver fresh produce to local communities.

By Renee Cammarata Hamilton, Director, Health Improvement Team, CHA, Stacey Robert, Farmer Dave’s and Rebecca Toutant, Wellness Manager, CHA.

For the eighth year in a row, Cambridge Health Alliance (CHA) is teaming up with Farmer Dave's, a sustainable farm in Dracut to bring locally-grown, fresh fruits and vegetables to communities in its service area - Malden and Cambridge - with a Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.
In the CSA program, consumers become shareholders of the farm for the season by paying for their shares of the harvest upfront and in return receive freshly-harvested produce. Shares will be freshly harvested by Farmer Dave's and ready for pick-up on Wednesday afternoons, from 3 – 6:30 p.m. at the CHA Malden Care Center. Additionally, folks can pick-up on Tuesday afternoons, from 3 - 6 p.m., at CHA Cambridge Hospital. The program is offered for 41 weeks (early Spring through late Fall) in Malden and 20 weeks (mid-June through late October) in Cambridge.
Every week, CSA members receive shares of fresh vegetables and fruits grown at Farmer Dave's. Vegetable shares are available in small and regular sizes to suit the produce needs of individuals to large families, vegetarians and omnivores. Every share includes generous portions of the season's bounty, each in its due time, including summer favorites such as tomatoes and corn, cooking staples like onions, carrots and potatoes, and chefs' picks like chard, beets, and other novelties throughout the season.
By committing to a local farmer, CSA members are supporting a small business and strengthening the local economy. Perhaps the most noticeable benefit is all the fresh produce CSA members get every week. The produce comes in a wide variety, ensuring that a range of colors and nutrients make it to the dinner table.
Farmer Dave's is also a Healthy Incentives Program (HIP) retailer. HIP retailers match Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) purchases of fruits and vegetables when shopping at farmers markets, farm stands, mobile markets and CSA farm share programs, like Farmer Dave's. Using SNAP benefits at one of the participating HIP retailers lets clients earn additional dollars in SNAP benefits for each dollar spent on HIP eligible fruits and vegetables, up to a monthly cap.
In an effort to serve the greater community, CHA and Farmer Dave's will donate surplus produce to the Zinberg Clinic at CHA Cambridge Hospital. For more information about Farmer Dave's CSA, including registration, payment plans, and more, visit or call 978-349-1952.

This articles provide general information for educational purposes only. The information provided in this article, or through linkages to other sites, is not a substitute for medical or professional care, and you should not use the information in place of a visit, call consultation or the advice of your physician or other healthcare provider.

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