Unusual CSAs in New England
It’s so good to be firmly back in the growing season. Most farmers’ markets are open now, and CSAs are kicking into high gear. If you haven’t heard this acronym before (has it reached ubiquity yet?), CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture—a business model that allows consumers to buy shares in a farm early in the year and then reap the bounty that follows. Some years are better than others, but the CSA model is popular because it gives farmers needed security and consumers a steady stream of locally-grown food.
Most CSAs stick to the mostly-veggies-and-some-fruit model and meat CSAs are grabbing a share of the market. But a growing number of boutique CSAs are popping up around New England. Here are some of my more unusual finds:
Pioneer Valley Heritage Grain CSA: Growers of spring and winter wheat, dry beans, dent corn, rye, and spelt. MA
Cape Ann Fresh Catch: Here’s a smart idea: a community supported fishery. Subscribers get regular fresh-caught deliveries of cod, yellowtail flounder, hake, pollock, haddock, grey sole, and redfish/ocean perch. MA
Mountain Flower Farm bouquet CSA : Receive fresh, organic flower bouquets for 20 weeks per year. VT
Grand View Farm Yarn & Fiber CSA: Enjoy a regular supply of romney wool, mohair, llama fiber. VT
Out on a Limb Heirloom Apple CSA: Each fall, subscribers receive weekly bags of unusual Maine-grown apples like Black Oxford, Wickson, and Priscilla, as well as more familiar varieties like Northern Spy and Jonagold. ME<
Hatchet Cove Farm Cheese, Mushroom, Bread, Dessert, and Egg CSAs: In addition to offering their own beautiful organic vegetables, Hatchet Cove contracts with local vendors to offer a cheese CSA from Appleton Creamery, a bread and/or dessert CSA from Waldoboro’s Village Bakery and Cafe, a mushroom CSA from Oyster Creek Mushroom Company, and a chicken and egg CSA from Terra Optima farm. Talk about one-stop shopping. I’m ready to move to mid-coast Maine for this.