Another benefit of becoming a CSA shareholder is that you can create a strong relationship to your farmer. CSA farms often invite you out to the farm, encourage you to participate in some farm activities, and keep you up-to-date on the progress of the crops. It is a fantastic way way to get to know and support local producers.
How does it work? In a CSA system, the farmer grows food for a group of shareholders or subscribers, who pledge to buy a portion of the farm’s crop that season. This arrangement gives growers up-front cash to finance their operation and higher prices since the middleperson has been eliminated. Most CSAs are organized with produce, but some are adding meat products. The four types of CSAs are:
- Subscription or farmer-driven - The farmer organizes the CSA and makes most of the management decisions. The shareholder or subscriber is not very involved in the farm. This kind of CSA is quickly becoming the most common.
- Shareholder or consumer-driven - Consumers organize the CSA and hire the farmer to grow what they want. The consumers make most of the decisions. This model is often used in the Northeast.
- Farmer cooperative - This is a farmer-driven CSA in which two or more farms pool their resources to supply customers.
- Farmer-consumer cooperative - The farmer and consumer co-own land and other resources and work together to produce food.
You can also contact John and Janna Wesselius at The Cornucopia about their CSA deliveries to Orange City, Sioux Center, and Sioux City. Visit The Cornucopia Facebook page to learn more about joining their CSA or call/e-mail them at (712) 490-8218, firstname.lastname@example.org