Category Archives: Links

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) – Reno and Tahoe

Photo Courtesy of Mountain Bounty Farms

I have been on a public relations roll for Community Supported Agriculture lately, so here is my promised blog post about local CSA options in Northern Nevada and in North Lake Tahoe.  Basically, a CSA is  a system where members pay in advance to receive a weekly share of fresh and in season vegetables.  Most options are a selection of what is grown that week, so it is always exciting to find out what types of veggies you will receive.  Then, there is the joy of learning what the vegetables are, Swiss Chard and beets anyone?  I enjoyed searching for new recipes and asking friends about what they were going to do with their vegetables.  Many farms provide a newsletter, describing the vegetables you received and offering favorite recipes.

I personally was a participant with Mountain Bounty Farm last summer – you can read about my experience here.  This summer, I have already paid my membership for the vegetable and fruit share at Natural Trading Company.  I will write more as my experience with them ensues.

Since I spend quite a bit of time in Reno, I have had many people ask me about the CSA options in Reno.  Although, my first research led me to believe option were limited, I have since discovered that Reno has several options available.  The NV Grown website list several on their subscription farms page.  I will go ahead and post what they have listed:

NORTHERN NEVADA CSAs:

Chickie Baby Blooms CSA (775) 423-9585
chickiebabyblooms@hotmail.com

Custom Gardens Organic Farm CSA (775) 577-2069
customgardens@att.net
http://customgardens-organic-farm.com

Girlfarm/Grow For Me Sustainable Farm (775)677-0636
Personal Farmer Program
contactgirlfarm@mac.com
www.girlfarm.org

Great Basin Basket CSA (775) 351-2551
greatbasinbasketcsa@gmail.com
www.greatbasinbasket.com

Nanadew Herb Farm (775) 867-3067
CurtisAnna@NanaDewHerbFarm.com
www.nanadewherbfarmCSA.com

Rise & Shine Farms  (775) 867-5873
csa@riseandshinefarms.com
www.riseandshinefarms.com

4 Season Farm (775) 747-2222
tom@pinyondesign.com
www.riverschool.info

SOUTHERN NEVADA CSAs:
Meadow Valley CSA Farm (702) 864-2291
meadowvalleycsa@gmail.com
http://meadowvalleycsa.blogspot.com/

There is also a great new foodie magazine in Reno/Tahoe called Edible Reno-Tahoe.  In their Spring 2010, they wrote a feature about farm to table community supported agriculture programs in the area.  You can read the story here.   They provide information about CSA

Great Basin Basket CSA
Includes NanaDew Farms, Lattin Farms, Homegrown Nevada, Churchill Butte Organics, Heavenly Organics, Mayberry Farms, and Sierra Valley Farms
Fallon, Nev.
775-351-2551
greatbasinbasketcsa@gmail.com
www.Greatbasinbasket.com

Custom Gardens Organic Farm & CSA
Silver Springs, Nev.
775-577-2069
Subscription Farms on www.NevadaGrown.com

Churchill Butte Organics
Dayton, Nev.
775-721-6068

4 Season Farms CSA
690-4261
www.Riverschool.info

Organic Pastures
Milk, cream, butter, and almonds
Dr. Kelly Reuss
530-419-3126
kellyreuss@yahoo.com
www.Organicpastures.com

Grow For Me Sustainable Farm
Reno, Nev.
775-667-0636
www.Girlfarm.org

Garden Goddess CSA
Mewaldt Organics
Fallon, Nev.
Korena Mewaldt
korenakorena@hotmail.com

NanaDew Herb Farm CSA
Fallon, Nev.
775-867-3087, 775-427-6039 (cell)
www.Nanadewherbfarm.com
CurtisAnna@NanaDewHerbFarm.com

Rise & Shine Farms
Eggs, chickens, and produce
Fallon, Nev.
775-867-5873
csa@riseandshinefarms.com
www.Riseandshinefarms.com

Stone House Ranch
Chilcoot, Calif.
775-351-7000
www.Stonehouseranch.com
stonehouseranch@yahoo.com

Dawn Gardens
Crescent Mills, Calif.
530-284-6036
www.Dawngardens.org
info@dawngardens.org

Trails End Farm
Janesville, Calif.
530-253-2809
www.Trailsendfarm.org

They also recommend supporting farmers by attending local farmer’s markets…

Nevada Certified Farmers’ Market Association:Nevadagrown.com/farmers_markets.aspx
CBE Inc. Markets for Northern Nevada: Crystlbrdg.clearwire.net
Placer County: Visit placer.com/county-farmers-markets.aspx
Nevada County: Nevadacofb.org/markets.html
El Dorado County: Co.el-dorado.ca.us/ag/certified_market.html

It would be great to hear of others experiences with local CSAs, as well as any fun recipe ideas for some of those more unique local vegetables.  Joining a farm is a great way to help the environment’s health, as well as your own!  How green is that?

“Riding the Green Wave” – Live from Lake Tahoe Eco Symposium

Do you know where you food comes from?  WHY NOT?

Mark Estee, owner of several local Truckee, CA restaurants- Moody’s Bistro, Baxter’s Bistro and Burger Me – discussed ways to go green locally.  He said the number one way he has become eco-concious as a Truckee restauranteur is to go green by purchasing produce from local farmers.  He presented the question:

Do you know where you food comes from?  WHY NOT?

Estee promoted the Slow Food movement – he helped start the Lake Tahoe chapter.  He said it is important to keep business green and sustainable even if it doesn’t make fiscal sense in the beginning – don’t give up.

“Success does not mean it was easy,” said Carlo Luri of Bently Biofuels.  He reported on the history of the formation of Bently Biofuels in Minden, NV.  He gave information regarding biofuels and biofuel conversions.  Learn more at the Bently Biofuels web site.

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“Feed Your Mama”

Mark Ofarrall from  Hungry Mother Organics in Carson City, NV began his presentation by asking members of the audience a variety of questions…

What did you have for lunch?  Chicken Caesar Wrap.

Do you know where it came from? No.

Do you know how the wrap is made?  No.

What type of car do you have? A Subaru.

Do you know where it came from?  Indiana.

How does it run? Gas.

The point is we know where our cars and fuel come from, but often we do not know where the food we put into our bodies comes from or how it is made.   Ofarrall showed off his hanging lettuce basket, as well as a snow pea/lettuce ensemble. “The tagline for our company is Feed Your Mama,” said Ofarrall.  “We hope people will want to go home and grow their own food.”

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“We have two electric vehicle charging stations that have been in place for over a year,” said Sierra Nevada Brewing Company Sustainability Coordinator Cheri Chastain.  “They have never been used.”

A collective gasp from the audience.

Chastain expanded on the importance of getting to know your farmers – Sierra Nevada Brewing Company (SNBC) has a relationship with local barley farmers.  She also discussed sustainability.  What does sustainability mean to you?

SNBC leads by example by being sustainable in everything they do from energy efficiency (heat recovery, lighting, etc.) to generating their own electricity through a fuel cell installed on site, as well as using solar panels.  They reuse as much as possible, and then recycle everything else.  Currently, SNBC is working on creating a composting facility.


The Green Chamber of Commerce

Did you know there is a Green Chamber of Commerce?

Apparently, the US Chamber of Commerce is not very environmentally conscious.  Apple and Pacific Gas recently pulled out of the US Chamber due to this fact.

The Green Chamber advocates for green public policy.  They have green networking events, member-to-member benefits, political advocacy, membership directory and partnerships with green media, certification agencies and advocacy groups.

NV Energy – The Rise of Electric Vehicles

Travis Johnson, P.E. from NV Energy said to remember 3 numbers:

  • 20 lbs of C02 = 1 gallon gas
  • 1 pound CO2 per kilowatt hour
  • 4 miles per kilowatt hour

What is coming in 2010/11?

  • Nissan Leaf (battery electric)
    • 100 mile
    • 90+ top speed
    • Cost: In CA, $20,280 after tax credit and rebate – $349/mo lease.  Less in NV.

“It’s like a Prius on steroids.” – Travis Johnson

  • Chevy Volt (Plug-in Hybrid)
    • 300 + miles with gas backup
    • Cost $32K in CA, $25K in NV.

Plug-in vehicles in Las Vegas are running on .70 cents/gallon.  Johnson discussed the energy grid – in NV, geothermal power is being used at night which is when the electric vehicle would be plugged in to charge.  This means a virtually zero emission vehicle.

Climate Change – What is 350?

Jamie Hinn from 350.org reported on climate change.  He said that 350 is evidence that ideal temperature for the planet is 350 parts per million of CO2, the safe upper limit in atmosphere.  The question he presented to the Lake Tahoe Eco Symposium:

How do we make getting back to 350 fun?

Check out this video to find out!

Hinn discussed the POWER of presenting the 350 message through video, photography, events, music, sports.  The number 350 was put in as many creative places as possible, both on and off the grid, in locales around the world.  He noted the power of the individual, as well as the success of groups, both large and small.  From China to Iran to New York to Lake Tahoe, the message 350 was reiterated again and again to become prominent in the minds of people around the world.

Green Business in the Sierras

Sierra Business Council

Sierra Business Council President Steve Frisch focused his presentation on the challenges facing sustainable business.  He persuaded moving past talk into action.  “We need to balance between regulatory approach and market drivers,” said Frisch.  “The piece driving change currently is non-profit and government non-regulatory.  We need this to flip. We need the courage to lead.”

What drives a better economy?

What is the right thing regarding green business and green development?

What is the new voice of business?

“Restoring resources from beginning to end.  We have to embed this in everything we do.” – Steve Frisch

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Many Shades of Green by Tracey Grose –  NEXT 10

California per capita energy usage has decreased while the rest of the nation has increased energy use.  Why is this?  According to Grose, California leads in innovation and forefront in green technology – it is diverse, growing faster than local economy.  Employment in green business has grown 36% compared to 13% growth in total economy.  A vast array of green economic growth exist – to learn more, download the presentation here.

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Lake Tahoe Prosperity Plan

Trish Kelley presented on the Lake Tahoe Prosperity Plan.  This is a lake-wide collaborative plan to promote economic growth and environmental protection in the Tahoe region.  The Tahoe basin is losing jobs compared to the rest of the region; the existing aged development is contributing to environmental degradation.

“There is a need for a transformation and revitalization of the economy,” said Kelley.  “If we make the right policy to allow business innovation, we can change the trajectory of the economy in the basin.”

“Unfortunately, the basin is not very sustainable,” said Kelley.  “Someone recently said the basin was the brownest green area that they had ever seen, so that is our challenge.”

Read an article about the prosperity plan published in the Sierra Sun.

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“We Can Do This – How Greening CA Businesses will make money for CA Businesses!”

Presented by Hank Ryan – Small Business California

“This room is not full.  This room should be overflowing with people who have these attitudes,” said Ryan.

Small biz must be proactive by being energy smart.  This requires 3 basic tools:

  • energy savings = easily measured
  • access to capital that allows business to invest in energy savings
  • regulations that encourage business to earn profits by saving energy

Ryan discussed “smart meters” – ping information about energy devices in order to save.  This is projected to cut use by 5-10%.  Are you paying the right energy rate as a business? Websites and devices being created to help us power down.   Can computers help in the revolution of energy savings?

Redeveloping Green in Crystal Bay, Nevada – Boulder Bay Development

Boulder Bay project manager Brian Helm discussed development in Lake Tahoe in the past.  There was a huge burst of development in the 1940s, and then people started to realize this was causing degradation to the Lake, and the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency was established.  The TRPA created thresholds to protect the clarity and ecosystem of Lake Tahoe.

Boulder Bay will be developed in Crystal Bay, NV on the north shore of Lake Tahoe at the current location of the Tahoe Biltmore Casino.  Helm feels redevelopment will be better than the existing site , as it addresses issues that were not dealt with in the past.  The design will be mixed-use and mixed-design, focusing on pedestrian orientation to engage visitors.  The proposed restoration will tear down old inefficient buildings and restore over 3 acres with impervious coverage.  The existing structures are not very green friendly and create huge carbon footprints for each guest.  The new design will have a 32% overall reduced carbon footprint.

Helm discussed the importance of collaboration with public-private projects:

  • Nevada Utility Undergrounding
  • Brockway Resedential Water Quality
  • Creating a Sustainable Economy – mixed-use buildings will bring more groups for Mon-Thurs stays where current occupancy is mostly weekend visitors from Fri-Sun

After a question regarding TRPA standards, Helm noted that most of the TRPA plan was written in the 1980s – does not address the level of SmartGrowth and environmental standards that many environmental planners focus on today.

There was a question regarding community feelings regarding development in Lake Tahoe from a member of the audience who does not live in the area.  Helm said in the beginning, feelings were about 50/50 regarding approval of development.  After listening to community concerns, Boulder Bay made changes to the plan to address these issues which increased the support to about 80%.

How do you feel about development in a location like Lake Tahoe?