Fresh Produce Changes Everything

14.5 pounds of fresh veggies and citrus

I feel like it’s really dramatic–and privileged–of me to say that. And yet, it’s true. Since I started picking up a box of locally-grown produce from Cal Poly Pomona, about five weeks ago, everything’s changed.

Up until now, I haven’t been part of the “eat local” movement because I live in a part of L.A. that isn’t trendy enough to access it. I was going to get Farm Fresh to You based on a friend’s recommendation but they only deliver during the night and anything left on my doorstep would be stolen before dawn.

So when Cal Poly Pomona announced it had started a “Farm Box” program that allows you to pick up CPP-grown produce for just $26–and that every purchase supports student success–I thought I’d try it out. I had no idea how much it would impact my life.

These fresh items require creativity and timely attention–cooking has become an innovative art around here! And, even after too long in the kitchen long after my feet began to ache, it boosts my spirit to know that I’m eating off the land, in a way that supports students, the local economy, and the earth. Oh and did I mention my new nickname? My pops calls me “Farmer Joe” because on our Sunday Zoom call, I show off the contents of my box of produce. My sister-in-law asks, “So, what’s on the menu this week?”

I’m not sure what recipes I’ll play with this week but they will include the following goodies, or what my brother called “deliciousness”: broccoli, spinach, beets, kale, lettuce, avocados, lemons, oranges, celery and cauliflower.

Purchase a Farm Fresh box of produce from Cal Poly Pomona here. The only drawback is that you have to pick it up from campus on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Given we’re in a pandemic and I can’t really go out any way, it hasn’t been a problem.

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