Ah raspberry!

Ah raspberry-                                                        
if you are so beautiful
upon my ready tongue,
what wonders
lie in store for me!

-From the poem “The Raspberries in My Driveway” by Erica Jong

We are very fortunate to have these delightful berries available for you in this month’s share.

Cultivated in passive solar hoop houses by the students and volunteers of the Michigan State University (MSU) Student Organic Farm, these fragile red beauties are USDA Certified Organic and ready to be used in your favorite recipes or popped directly into your mouth.  What as wonderful way to bring back the taste of summer (if only for a little while) during this cold winter!

Hoop house at MSU Student Organic Farm

The MSU Student Organic Farm (SOF) is a 10-acre, certified organic year-round teaching and production farm.  Among the many programs it offers is a 9 month Organic Farmer Training Program (OFTP), a hands-on learning and development opportunity that helps prepares students for careers in organic farming and other sustainable agriculture related careers.   Focusing on the production of vegetables, flowers, fruits and herbs, this training includes management of the farm and its 20,000 square feet of passive solar greenhouse space.  The SOF also produces for a 48-week CSA, 7 month on campus farm stand, and sales to campus dinning services.  Using workshops, lectures, readings and assignments , the SOF helps to cultivate knowledge and understanding of organic farming principles and practices.  The MSU SOF offers tours, and even the ability to volunteer.  For further information, check out their website at www.msuorganicfarm.com.

Did you know these little red gems also provide health benefits?   

In addition to vitamin C, raspberries contain high levels of cyanidin and pelagonidin glycosides which are also known to help prevent cancer. These substances are found in fresh and frozen berries, but seem to be missing in canned berries. Substances called ellagitannins found in raspberries are known antioxidants.  Red raspberries, in particular, help fight high cholesterol by lowering the level of LDL (bad cholesterol) in the bloodstream.   Delicious and nutritious.

Thank you MSU SOF!

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