Community Supported Agriculture
What is it? Where did it all start?
Community Supported Agriculture is a farm operation in which the growers and the local community share the risks and benefits associated with food production. Community members invest in a share of the CSA and in return are given fresh produce all throughout the growing season. As a member of the CSA, you receive fresh produce every week and ultimately get to experience healthy, chemical-free, locally-grown food. You can try different vegetables or savour a new dish all while developing a relationship with the farmer and knowing exactly who and where your produce is coming from.
The idea of community supported agriculture started mid-1960’s in Japan when a group of women noticed an increase in imported foods and the loss of farmland to development. The group approached a local family farm and an agreement was made where the farmer would supply the women and their families with fresh produce and in return they would support the farm by helping to pay for seed, equipment and labour. Since that time, CSA’s have continued to develop and grow in North America and Europe.
What are the benefits of a CSA?
- You are supporting sustainable local agriculture by buying your produce directly from a local farmer. This helps small farmers make a living for them and their families, and it also supports the local economy.
- CSA produce is healthier for you and your family. Because the produce does not have to travel long distances from the farm to your plate, the food arrives to you fresher and with more nutrients intact.
- Since CSA produce only has to travel a short distance, the produce carries a much smaller carbon footprint than that found in your average super market. By buying local sustainably grown produce, you reduce your impact on the environment.
- You build a relationship with the person who actually grows your food! And because the farm is located right inside Lethbridge, you can easily visit a farm where the food you are eating is actually grown. You can see for yourself exactly how the food is grown.
- CSA produce is also more affordable. Because CSA produce is not imported from other countries, fluctuations in dollar value doesn’t affect the prices. Local means little to no trucking costs and because you are buying
directly from the farmer, you do not pay retail mark-up. For these reasons, CSA produce is typically more affordable.
- It’s all in the flavour! CSA produce is always delivered as fresh as possible. Due to short travel distances and small scale operation, CSA produce is delivered within days (not weeks) of being picked, which means it is amazingly fresh and full of flavour. Just like if you picked it right out of your own garden!
- Avoid shopping for the growing season! Choose the home delivery option and have fresh produce delivered
weekly to your front door, with no extra charge.
What Shares are available for 2017?
For the 2017 growing season we will be offering 30 CSA shares. The CSA program will run for 22 weeks (season permitting) from May 21st until October 15, 2017.
Synergy Urban Farms 2017 CSA options:
- Couple Share – about 6 – 8 different types of vegetables; this basket is perfect for couples, or for singles who
eat and/or juice a lot of veggies or families who eat a small amount of veggies in a week.
- Singles Share – about 4 – 6 different types of vegetables; this basket is for singles, students on a budget, or couples who only eat a small amount of vegetables in a week.
How do I get my vegetable basket every week?
Synergy Urban Farms offers one of either:
- Home delivery on Sundays from 6pm – 8pm weekly
- Basket pick-up on Thursdays at Urban Grocer (1016 9 Ave S) from 3pm – 7pm
This becomes your preferred method of receiving your weekly basket. In the case that you picked delivery and want to pick up your basket one week? Not a problem. With ample notice you can arrange to pick-up your basket. If you have any questions, please ask.
Okay, so how much does this all cost?
At Synergy Urban Farms we want local produce to be competitively priced, so we strive to offer fair and competitive pricing. Our 2017 CSA share prices are as follows:
- Couple Share – $600 = ~$27/week
- Singles Share – $425 = ~$19/week**There is an additional $10 basket fee for all shares**
Do you offer any discounts?
Why yes in fact we do. If you show us your current student ID and a class schedule to either the University of Lethbridge
or Lethbridge College we will give you a 10% discount. Also if you are a returning subscriber from 2016, you will receive a 10% discount.
Why do I have to pay so early for my CSA Share?
Starting up a farm for the season requires a fair amount of start-up cash. We need money to cover ordering seed
and supplies before we can even start working for the season. Vegetable sales don’t start until mid summer, which means we have to operate for the entire spring with many expenses and no income. Expenses like fuel, soil amendment, insurance, wages, tools and equipment. By buying a CSA share you are helping us get the farm going for the season until we can make money selling produce at market. CSA sales are in integral part of what makes our farm work; without the support of our community we can’t operate.
If you would like to purchase a CSA Share with Synergy Urban Farms
please fill out this form:
Registration deadline for 2017 CSA Shares is March 30th, 2017.
How do I pay for my CSA Share?
Once we have received your form, we will contact you to arrange a time to come meet you, collect payment, and give you a CSA membership card.
We only accept Cash or Cheque for payment.
For more information or to order a CSA share you can contact: