Meet our Member, Melissa

MelissaUsing CSA vegetables is like a game of Tetris, says member Melissa Olson.  She and her husband tend to first target vegetables with the shortest shelf life, such as leafy dark greens.

“It’s a challenge,” Melissa says. “You’ve got your leafy greens, you’ve got your salad. … First there is the  kale …chard and the choy come next.” Her go-to summer dish: sauteed mushrooms and kale with eggs.

As a nutritionist and registered dietitian, Melissa knows that over time vegetables lose not just flavor but nutrients, too.  She’s also well-aware that fresh vegetables, an essential part of health, can be unaffordable for some Brooklyn individuals and families. So she puts the Central Brooklyn CSA on the table.

“I recommend it whenever they’re on food stamps and they’re having trouble getting access to affordable vegetables,” says Melissa, who has worked at Community Healthcare Network for four years. “The clients that have used it have really done well with their health.”

“I truly believe a CSA share could be a life-changing experience for someone’s health,” she says in a tone of humility. “I know it has been for us.”

That the Community Healthcare Network branch is located close to the Central Brooklyn CSA distribution site makes it even more accessible for Melissa and her clients who choose to participate. Hebron SDA happens to be on Melissa’s way home from Community Healthcare Network, such that she integrates Thursday pick-ups seamlessly into her routine.

Melissa also encourages others to attend the Windflower Farm annual Harvest Party, if possible. She and her husband so enjoyed seeing the coop houses where tomatoes grow and the lush fields of green where herbs and – yes – the kale stalks grow.  “Now when we eat our vegetables we can picture where the vegetables were grown,” says Melissa.

Until the summer CSA season ends, she and her husband, along with their two year-old child, will continue to team for CSA Tetris, at which they’ve achieved a high level of creativity to accommodate her husband’s gluten allergy.  Melissa is also working on her blog on gluten-free basics, called the Gluten Free Game, where she has recently posted her first video on gluten-free baking.  That, together with Melissa’s use of the CSA in both personal and professional aspects, is a win-win.

Membership Forms

apple treeThe wait is over, it’s time to start signing up for your summer CSA shares. Download the CBCSA Membership Agreement Form 2013(Wait List Only)


We can’t wait to see you this summer.  And it’s never too late to become a core group member!

CBCSA Brochure 2013

It’s never too early to think about a summer CSA!

week 5 shareLet’s face it- it’s freezing! We have had some of the coldest days this winter season. And with more snow on the horizon, even if you like winter weather, it’s still nice to think about being warmer. And if you can agree, let’s snuggle in with the Central Brooklyn CSA and look forward to the warm distribution nights we have ahead of us this year.  The following are a few of the updates on the progress and plans we have made so far:

1. As fortune would have it, the Hebron SDA Church (at 1256 Dean Street) has welcomed us back for 2013 distribution.

2.  The 2013 season will run from June 13 through November 7 and our distribution day and times will continue to be on Thursdays from 5:00 to 7:30.

windflowerfarm3. Jan and Ted Blomgren from Windflower Farm will return as our farmers. In addition to the vegetable share, they will be also be offering us fruit, egg and flower shares. As a reminder, Jan and Ted farm organically and are certified by NOFA.D fruit shares will be available on a sliding scale based on income.

4. More details about share prices and options will be made available in the near future! We will also have membership forms for this season made available in the next month or so.

If you have any questions or would like to take on a core group role, email us at for more information.

CORE GROUP MEMBERS NEEDED:  We could use help with different levels of organization and coordination including membership outreach, coordinating weekly distribution, and event planning! In the past, such volunteers have been able to receive benefits for their much needed and appreciated assistance. Think about it and contact us over the next few months and throughout the season if you’re interested.

Looking forward to a great season!

CBCSA Membership Agreement Form 2013