The CSA Farming Lifestyle
CSA Shares are more than just a box of fresh produce from your favorite farmers. It's a whole philosophy that draws the conclusion that the farmer and consumer share mutual responsibilities to each other. We are united with our CSA Members under our mission to grow and consume fresh, locally grown, healthy produce.
One reason Ben & I find ourselves adoring the CSA farm style is because we create a direct relationship with the families that will be enjoying the fruits of our labor. Our work is therefore more rewarding, and the Member's dollar represents something more than just a purchase of farm products.
Our CSA also creates a stable & trustworthy Member base that is more reliable than farmers’ markets, restaurant sales, or wholesale. We rely on our Members to buy their shares in the spring, and our Members rely on us to responsibly grow produce for their families for the duration of the season.
Why do so many small family farms adopt the CSA methodology? Because it's really the only way for start-up farms to make it in this industrialized world. Members provide capital in the spring for farmer's to purchase necessities for a successful growing season. As first generation farmers, without the capital in the spring Ben & I would have never been able to venture into farming at all.
You'll notice that our CSA prices increased this season, for the first time in 3 years. The cost of our CSA takes into consideration the transportation, packaging, growing, labor, administration, propane, etc. We needed to increase the prices slightly to cover the increase in labor and transportation costs, to make our farm financially stable which is crucial to our long term success.
Our little peanut helping pick peppers.
Some say that CSA Farms are an investment into the future of Agriculture in our Nation. Keep in mind that the CSA Style has been increasing in popularity for over the last 15 years or so, and is now present in every continent. Hopefully more responsibly grown food will emerge as we continue to see progress in the local foods movement on a local, state and national level!
By signing up for your CSA Share sooner than later, you're supporting us in our growing costs this spring. We start the greenhouse and germination chamber over 3 months in advance to our first deliveries so the early income is always appreciated to cover those expenses surrounding seeding and startup costs.
I'm so happy to share my thoughts on this with you! It's certainly not just a box of veggies :)
~The Farmer's Wife