Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a farming system set up to benefit both farmers and consumers. In a CSA, a farmer will offer “shares” or "subscriptions" of the farm for sale to members of the community. A CSA does not have to be dedicated certified organic, but many CSAs are organic. For organic farmers in particular, a good CSA system allows for low-cost marketing and may help guarantee a decent percentage of seasonal sales.
When an individual purchases shares, their monetary support helps fund farming costs. In return the shareholder receives a share of the farm's harvest. Historically, CSA shares for consumers have included vegetables, but other organic products, such as meat, flowers, eggs, fruits and preserved farm products may also be included.
A CSA arrangement allows growers and consumers to share in the risks and benefits of organic food production.
Also Known As: Farm shares