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Saturday, February 28, 2015

What to expect in your CSA shares?

CSA or Community Supported Agriculture programs are becoming relatively popular across the United States among produce growers and communities. If you are eager to join others who are wanting to eat healthy, locally, and more sustainable, but don't have room to establish and grow your own vegetable garden, then joining a local CSA is the next best thing.

As you may recall in a previous post, I talked about what a CSA is and great reasons why to choose a CSA to join. Today, I am going to answer a question we get asked often when talking about CSAs. I am from a rural/farming community so the community isn't as familiar with what a CSA program is all about.

We often get asked "What all does a member get in their CSA? How does it work?"
Well each CSA is different, depending how the farm wants to run their program. A great resource to see what different CSA's offer is Local Harvest. Some offer CSA memberships for 10 weeks to 25 weeks. Some may add eggs, bread, and/or meat to their CSA. There are so many different options, it just depends on how the farm wants to operate their CSA program.

I can share with you how our CSA works.
Our Spring/Summer CSA is 15 weeks long. It starts roughly mid-May and runs for 15 weeks. Each week our members get a box of 6-10 different vegetables. We offer full shares and half shares. The full shares are designed to feed a family of 4 for a week or a couple that likes to eat a lot of produce. A half share is designed for a couple or a family who doesn't eat as much produce. Both options are popular with our customers. Our weekly CSA are dropped off for home delivery or picked up on the farm.

So what comes in these weekly CSA baskets?
We give an assortment of 6-10 different vegetables based off what is in season at the time.

                                                        An example of a Spring CSA share is :
                              Radish, green onions, spinach, kale, loose leaf lettuce mix, and arugula

An early Summer CSA share:
Red potatoes, kohlrabi, sweet onion, green beans, zucchini, green onions, kale, and broccoli

A late Summer CSA share :
Eggplant, sweet onions, tomatoes, green beans and yellow wax beans, zucchini, yellow squash, radish, green onions, potatoes, sweet banana peppers, pickles, and cherry tomatoes

Each week varies for CSA share based on what produce we have in season at the time. One year there might be several weeks of sweet corn, and another they're might only be a few. The same goes for all produce. We change up each weeks basket to offer a variety, but when potatoes are ready, for example, we provide them every week. 

After our Spring/Summer CSA is over, we open up a Fall CSA that is 7 weeks. Here is an example of a Fall CSA share
Carrots, sweet potatoes, kale, popcorn, eggplant, butternut squash, spinach, and yellow onion

This is our 9th year growing produce, our 6th year offering a CSA, and we are excited about another year. Are you part of a CSA where you live? What are your favorite vegetables to get in your weekly share?

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