What's a CSA?
A CSA, also referred to as a Community Supported Agriculture Program, is a program with the goal to put people who use farm-grown products, (which is almost all of us), and the Fort Mill farmers who grow them together. The program works on a subscription basis. Subscribers can buy a subscription to the produce service for either a growing season or for the whole year.
How Fort Mill CSAs Work
Grocery shopping is a whole lot easier for Fort Mill CSA subscribers. Instead of needing to wade through the produce section each week farmers do the job for them. Local farmers come up with a weekly basket of produce (sometimes meat and dairy as well) and deliver it to an established, central location, or subscribers can pick it up at the farm.
It really is a concept that's catching on throughout the country given it cuts out the middleman, ensures farm-fresh produce at affordable prices, and is good for the environment because it cuts down transportation costs, as well. CSA subscriptions primarily run from early May through September or October, depending on where you live.
Benefits of CSAs in Fort Mill, SC
What are the advantages of joining a Fort Mill CSA program? Well, the produce does not have to be transferred to a warehouse or group of supermarkets, it's only moved once, to the pick-up location, so subscribers are helping save on fuel costs and spare the environment from emissions. One significant advantage is the produce is just about as fresh as possible, because it is chosen, sorted and delivered generally on the same day.
Often, it's less expensive than buying produce through] supermarkets in Fort Mill, because it eliminates the middleman and links the consumer and the local farmer without any markup on profit. Fort Mill CSAs profit the local economy, too, since they keep your revenue right in the area, instead of sending it to other countries or other states where produce may originate.
Fort Mill CSA Programs Are on the Rise
Just a few short years ago, a CSA program probably didn't exist in your Fort Mill community. They've definitely gained popularity in the last few years, and for good reason. They're a great way for farmers to know they are going to have a market for their crops, but they are a great way for the consumer to get high-quality products without breaking the bank, too.
Generally, the crops are organic, so health-conscious Fort Mill individuals can be sure they're eating right, and community supported agriculture programs offer a wide array of options, including;
You do not need to live right next to an agricultural area, either, often farmers will spread their produce around in several different cities to make sure all their crops are spoken for.
If you don't have a CSA program in your community, talk to a local community service organization about starting one. Some are maintained by local food co-ops or service organizations, while farmers often arrange their own CSAs, too. If you know a farmer, find out if they're offering a CSA program, and if they're not, give them a hint! These programs benefit just about everybody involved, and they're easy to start and maintain, so there is no reason why your community should do without one.
CSA Apprenticeship in Fort Mill
Even if you feel you can't afford to belong to Fort Mill CSAs, don't despair. Many farmers are offering apprenticeships for people who can't afford to purchase a membership for a season. You're employed in the fields for a pre-determined amount of time each week, and find out about the business of agriculture, and you receive a share of the crops in return. Now that's a win-win situation for everyone!
During a time when we worry about the quality of our food, how far it's traveled, and how long it's been sitting in a warehouse before it finally arrived at the supermarket, these novel programs can bring a little more peace of mind about where dinner's coming from and teach you new skills at the same time.
Even if you don't want to work in an apprenticeship, you can usually visit the farm and actually see where your next meal is coming from, and that is an excellent feeling. So, help a farmer, feed your family better, and save money by joining Fort Mill CSA in your area.