Sharing the harvest By Maria Sonnenberg
BROCK HALL PHOTOS
A harvest of veggie delights awaits at Florida Fields to Forks, an outstanding example of the Community Supported Agriculture program.
Fields to Forks program puts fresh, healthy food on community dining tables
Healthy and tasty food, the best holiday gift of all,
can be found in Palm Bay, where on Thursdays
and Fridays, plus Saturdays in the fall, the bounty
of the land is ready for pickup at Florida Fields
to Forks, Brevard’s outstanding example of the CSA —
Community Supported Agriculture — principle in action.
“We’re probably the largest CSA in the state of Florida,” said
commuter farmer Brock Hall, who each morning departs
his Satellite Beach home to work the 20-acre farm he and
his mother, Jan Pence, developed into a CSA in 2011. “Our
goal was to get extremely healthy produce into the local
community,” he said.
Jan has since stepped back, leaving Farmer Brock to run
the place, a gargantuan task considering the garden
and the stock animals, not to mention the collection of
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resident critters such as sibling goats, Lolly and Pop, and
Magnum P.I.G., an imposing once-feral hog that, despite an
impressive set of tusks, is a pussycat of a fellow.
As the name implies, the program exists because the
community supports it. The farm runs on the concept
of membership. A lifetime membership of $35 enables a
family to access the veggies, meats and products offered
throughout the year.
Hall takes pride in his farm’s beyond organic approach and
considers it part of his mission in life to raise awareness of
what the term really means, because sometimes, organic
isn’t really that organic.
“The USDA’s National Organic Standards provides an
exemption for farmers who want to finish off, and fatten,