It's the new year, and that usually entails resolutions about being more healthy. But families are busy, so simple tasks like just going grocery shopping for healthy food can be inconvenient, if not downright difficult. (This goes double for new parents!) Fortunately, you can get healthy, organic food delivered right to your doorstep or to a convenient local pickup area here in Marin County through a local farm's CSA or an organic grocery delivery service. These services all feature locally grown or produced sustainable food—perfect for the healthy locavore family!
Local Farm CSAs
What's a CSA? CSA stands for "community supported agriculture", and it's a way for consumers to get involved with local farms and food producers, support their efforts, and get great seasonal food, too. Every week, or month, or whatever time period you choose, you'll get a box full of fresh produce, eggs, meat, and more, ready to be incorporated into your family meal plan. Some farms, like Petaluma's Tara Firma Farms, offer other benefits to their CSA members, like special events and farm tours.
Most of the time, the farms choose what goes in subscribers' boxes, but that's usually a good thing, since they know what's at the peak of season. Prices for CSA boxes vary depending on the farm and the size and frequency of the box.
Sound interesting? Here's our list of local CSAs that deliver to areas within Marin County. Many of them deliver or offer drop off sites in San Francisco, Sonoma County, and the East Bay, as well (check their websites for exact locations). We've made sure to note which CSAs offer delivery right to your door, too.
West Marin's pioneering producer of grass-fed beef and other sustainable pasture-raised meats provides CSA subscribers with packages that include either meat or poultry. Since Marin Sun Farms raises a variety of livestock, you might receive beef, chicken, lamb, pork, goat, and duck. CSA boxes are delivered directly to your door. More info: www.marinsunfarms.com
These moist, flavorful, not-too-sweet cookies are excellent for snacks, breakfast or dessert. Full of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, your kids probably won't even realize they're snacking on something that's good for them!
Like many families in Marin, we lead busy lives—so busy that sometimes important things like family meals can get lost in the shuffle. Fortunately, that's where meal delivery services come in! These local culinary life-savers provide you and your family with delicious, healthy meals as well as the opportunity to sit down together at dining table in the evening, without having to resort to fast food or some other quick solution.
Here are some of the meal delivery services that deliver to homes in Marin County. All these services deliver throughout the county (usually with the exception of West Marin) unless otherwise indicated. If we've missed your favorite, please let us know about it and we'll consider adding it to the list. With all of these services, you can place your order online via the web or a mobile app. We've personally reviewed a few of these services, so read our reviews via the links to learn more.
If your family is at all like ours, you spend a lot of time shopping at one of the three Trader Joes stores in Marin. Their combination of good value, great service, offbeat atmosphere, and an eclectic selection of gourmet products keeps us going back. And, let's not forget the family-friendly aspects of the store—mini-shopper carts, free stickers, and rewards for finding Jojo the pony (in the Novato store) help keep children occupied and busy during those grocery shopping trips.
But what's the story behind Trader Joes? Did you know it's owned by a secretive German company? Where do all those private-label products they stock come from? How come many of their products—cheese, for example—are much less expensive than at other grocery stores?
Those of us who subscribe to the dictum that you can never have too many local Trader Joe's grocery stores will be excited to hear that the long awaited Larkspur location opens this Friday, July 24, 2009. No longer will shoppers from central and southern Marin have to trudge all the way to the Trader Joe's in San Rafael's Montecito shopping center, where long lines and challenging parking are the norm (especially on weekends… ugh).
They'll have music, a ceremonial lei-cutting, and, of course, free samples. This is the third Trader Joe's location in Marin, along with the aforementioned San Rafael store and the one in Novato.
The new location, in case you haven't seen the store going in, is the Cost Plus Plaza shopping center on the Redwood Highway frontage road, in the space formerly occupied by Tower Records and a Crown Books clearance center. With Cost Plus World Market and BevMo! in the same shopping center, there certainly won't be any shortage of places to shop for wine and beer! Hopefully the increased traffic from Trader Joe's will be good for everyone's business in Cost Plus Plaza.