What is Community Supported Agriculture?
CSA is a partnership of mutual commitment between a farm and a community of supporters that provides a direct link between the production and consumption of food. Supporters cover a farm's yearly operating budget by purchasing a share of the season's harvest. CSA members make a commitment to support the farm throughout the season, and assume the costs, risks and bounty of growing food along with the farmer or grower. Members help pay for product production costs, seeds, fertilizer, water, equipment maintenance, labor, etc. In return, the farm provides, to the best of its ability, a healthy supply of seasonal fresh produce or goods (in Sixdog's case cheese, mushrooms, fruit, eggs, and microgreens) throughout the growing season.
Becoming a member creates a responsible relationship between people and the food they eat, the land on which it is grown and those who grow it. This mutually supportive relationship between local farmers, growers and community members helps create an economically stable farm operation in which members are assured the highest quality produce at a fair price. In return, farmers and growers are guaranteed a reliable market for a diverse and seasonal selection of crops and food goods.
CSA reflects an innovative and resourceful strategy to connect local farmers and producers with local consumers; develop a regional food supply and strong local economy; maintain a sense of community; encourage land stewardship; and honor the knowledge and experience of growers and producers working with small to medium farms and food producers.
CSA is a unique model of local agriculture and economic community whose roots reach back 30 years to Japan where a group of women concerned about the increase in food imports and the corresponding decrease in the farming population initiated a direct growing and purchasing relationship between their group and local farms. This arrangement, called "teikei" in Japanese, translates to "putting the farmers' face on food." This concept traveled to Europe and was adapted to the U.S. and given the name "Community Supported Agriculture" at Indian Line Farm, Massachusetts, in 1985. As of January 2005, there are over 1500 CSA farms across the US and Canada.
What is a CSA Share and what is it worth?
With a pre-season payment you may purchase a “share” of the farm’s or producer's summer and fall harvest or products.You then receive a weekly portion of fresh, organic local products through our 26 week harvest cycle, June into mid-December.In signing up, you dedicate yourself to being our customer for the season.This provides the farm with a secure market for all our growing efforts.The farm, in turn, commits to providing an abundant, diverse and quality array of vegetables and fruit as each season allows.
In a strictly dollars and cents view, the worth of a share does represent a fair price for the products offered ~ if such food could be comparably found in supermarkets. More philosophically, the worth of a share is certainly linked with the value you place upon eating fresh, locally grown food, knowing who it is that grows your food, sustainable methods of food production, in keeping our locally economy robust and your own eating habits and life style healthy. The worth of a share is also best evaluated by looking at the entire growing or share season, rather than week to week; as the weekly variety and quantity of some products will vary seasonally. Being part of a CSA is truely learning the lifestyle that comes with eating seasonally and locally.
The Logistics of a Weekly CSA Delivery
For folks who are new to Community Supported Agriculture, this is definitely a unique way to pick up your weekly groceries. In order to make your pickup efficient and enjoyable, it is very important to read through the pickup protocol page here on our website.
Farm Policy - Summer 2013 CSA Agreement
Before joining our CSA, we ask that our members read and commit to the following statements. This is the Farm Policy, and it is what keeps our CSA running smoothly, both for our members and the farm team.
- I understand that I am committing to the 2013 growing and production season at Sixdog Farms CSA and will respect the parameters of being a CSA shareholder.
- I understand that the farmers and producers will do their best to provide a season's worth of fresh food goods.
- I understand that I am sharing in the risks and challenges inherent to farming and that quantities and the timing of my share of the harvest may be affected by adverse weather events, specifically pertaining to fruit shares for 2013.
- I understand that Sixdog Farms CSA's products are produced sustainably, locally, and ethically, and some are certified organic. The farm guarantees that my food goods will not be Genetically Modified, nor will it have been sprayed with chemical fertilizers or pesticides. Because of this, my food goods may contain a bug or two. Also, to promote storage and longevity, the farm does not wash my products prior to delivery. I will need to wash and inspect my goods before eating.
- I understand that it is my responsibility to pick up my share at the designated time and location.
- I understand that email is the primary method of communication from the farm, and I agree to open and read emails from the farm.
- I understand there will be no alternative arrangements for missed pickups.
- I understand that the success of the CSA and Sixdog Farms depends on my continued commitment to support the farm throughout the 26 week delivery season. Due to this, I understand that no refunds will be provided for shares.
Click HERE to begin signing up!