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Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA)

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Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA)

CSA Box June 24

Photo © Molly Watson
Definition: Community-supported agriculture (CSA) is a food production and distribution system that directly connects farmers and consumers. Consumers buy "shares" in a farm's harvest in advance.

The term "CSA" is also used to refer to an individual farm's CSA program.

Farmers earn important early-season capital and have a guaranteed market for their produce. Barring a disastrous harvest, consumers enjoy overall lower food costs, field-fresh produce, and greater access to high-demand fruits and vegetables like long-stem strawberries and heirloom tomatoes.

Most CSAs require an annual or quarterly buy-in and provide weekly deliveries or pick-ups, but some well-established programs offer monthly or even weekly "memberships." Many CSAs also offer farm visits, u-pick days, and other special events for members.

Find the CSA for you.

Also Known As: Farm shares
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