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Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs), Consumers’ Perspective

Community supported agriculture (CSA) refers to an arrangement voluntarily formed between a farmer and a consumer, whereby the consumer agrees to take on some of the risk of farming in exchange for a portion of the farmer’s produce. It is sometimes called subscription farming. In a typical CSA program, the consumer pays cash to the farmer before the beginning of the growing season for a CSA share (also called a membership or subscription) and, in exchange, receives a box of produce every week throughout the growing season. If the farmer’s crops fail, for whatever reason, the shareholder will not receive any produce. Most CSA farms produce a variety of crops to avoid disappointing their shareholders.

CSAs are a new development in the food system, and ...

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