Community Supported Agriculture

By: Milan Suktankar

The Growth of the CSA Movement

Community supported agriculture has been in existence for over 25 years and is a way for consumers to purchase local grown food directly from farmers. Typically the consumer pays before the season starts to keep cash flow with the farmer and receives weekly foods directly from the farmer. The farmer is able to give specific foods the family needs within reason and extra food goes to food banks. Sometimes farmers will provide meats, cheese, or flowers in addition to produce. Depending on the harvest each week the consumer and the farmer share the risk of what will grow and how much. Advantages are prominent between the farmer and consumer making the movement grow rapidly. Consumers are able to receive trustworthy and fresh foods of different varieties. Consumers are able to visit the farm and develop a relationship with the farmer. These advantages for consumers make it a great option for families and those in small communities. Farmers also benefit greatly from the movement. Farmers are able to spend time marketing before long harvest season, are able to receive money before to keep cash flow, and are able to create a relationship with the consumer. The consumer and farmer relationship keeps trust, business, and spreads the risk. Spreading risk is good for small farms so that they do not easily go out of business for one bad harvest. Consumers can be disappointed with a bad harvest but occasionally things can grow wrong and the movement helps to support the little mistakes and support the greater outcome. The community supported agriculture is great system for consumers and farmers to retrieve healthy foods and keep the agriculture system alive.
Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) | The Lexicon of Sustainability | PBS Food

References

Community Supported Agriculture. (2015). Retrieved September 7, 2015.


http://www.localharvest.org/csa/


Community Supported Agriculture. (1993). Retrieved September 7, 2015.


http://afsic.nal.usda.gov/community-supported-agriculture-3