What is a CSA Program? CSA stands for Community-Supported Agriculture (or Community-Shared Agriculture) and involves directly linking growers with eaters. CSA members, or 'shareholders', purchase their food at the beginning of the season in anticipation of the harvest to come. Having this income at the beginning of the season helps the farmer offset heavy start-up costs (e.g., seed purchase, germination, bed preparation, maintenance and construction, planting, transplanting, and so on). In addition, removing the 'middleman' in this way means the farmer can make a fair wage for their work while receiving much satisfaction in providing highly nutritious and delicious food to their members in a manner that stewards the land. CSA is a locally-based approach to agriculture and food distribution that fosters food security, and most importantly, builds relationships within the community.
In becoming a shareholder for the 2019 CSA Program, I agree to the following:
I will pick up my share at the designated time and place. If I cannot pick up or receive my vegetables, I will arrange to send a friend, neighbour, or family member on my behalf. If none of these options are available, I will give my farmers as much notice as I can so that alternative plans can be made. If I have not picked up my vegetables by the end of the pickup time, I allow my farmers to deal with my box using their best judgement in order to reduce spoilage.
I will notify the farm of any problems with my share within 24 hours of pickup.
I will return my box and lid each week, clean.
I understand that farming is both seasonal and unpredictable, and that the exact selections and quantities included in the weekly distribution will change as the season progresses.
I recognize that I am taking on some of the benefits and uncertainties of farming. I can celebrate the abundance when conditions are favourable, and may need to cope with low crop yields and crop failures due to weather, disease or pests.
I commit to the entire season with the payment I contribute, plus add-ons if applicable. If I am unsatisfied with the CSA program, I will contact my farmers before the first four weeks are over and I will be eligible for a pro-rated refund, less a $20 administrative charge. After four weeks, shares are no longer refundable.
I am open to the challenge of bringing new vegetables into my kitchen and planning meals with seasonal harvests in mind.