What is a CSA?
CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. The CSA model for farming is also referred to as subscription farming or farm shares. In this model members subscribe a season’s worth of vegetables, sharing both the risks and bounty of agriculture. You place your food dollar directly in the hands of a local family farm and in exchange receive a share of fresh, organically grown vegetables each week. Wairarapa Eco Farm delivers to pick-up points throughout Wellington, Upper Hutt, Lower Hutt, in Palmerston North, and throughout the Wairarapa.
By joining our farm as a CSA member you gain greater knowledge of where your food comes from and how it is produced, through weekly newsletters, farm visits, and recipes. Community Supported Agriculture unites farmers and consumers to create direct and mutually beneficial relationships around the production of environmentally sustainable and healthy local food. By joining a CSA you support small farms and a production system that provides nutritious and fresh food for your family.
10 good reasons to join our CSA
- It tastes better. Food grown at Wairarapa Eco Farm is usually harvested for you the day before you pick it up. It's crisp, sweet, and loaded with flavour. Produce sold in New Zealand shops often travels long distances on trucks or planes and is then stored for sometimes lengthy periods in warehouses.
- It is more nutritious/better for you. The shorter the time between the farm and your table, the less likely it is that nutrients will be lost from fresh food. Most fresh produce loses much of its nutritional value within 48 hours of harvesting.
- You help preserve genetic diversity. In the modern industrial agricultural system, varieties are chosen for their ability to ripen simultaneously and withstand harvesting equipment; for a tough skin that can survive packing and shipping; and for long shelf life in the store. In contrast, at Wairarapa Eco Farm we grow a huge number of varieties to provide a long season of harvest, an array of eye-catching colours, and the best flavours.
- It is safer. With all the issues related to food safety, there’s an assurance that comes from looking a farmer in the eye or walking in the fields where your food comes from. At Wairarapa Eco Farm, you get to know “your farmer” and you know that we take our responsibility to our members seriously.
- You support local farm families. All over New Zealand, farmers are a vanishing breed. And no wonder – commodity prices are at historic lows, often below the cost of production. Local farmers who sell direct to consumers cut out the middleman and get full retail price for their food, which means farm families can afford to stay on the farm, and keep it active.
- You help build a community. When you buy direct from Wairarapa Eco Farm, you are engaging in a time-honoured connection between eater and grower, and you are supporting a local business. Getting to know folks who grow your food helps you know more about the place and community in which you live. And at our CSA, it gives you access to a farm where you, your children and grandchildren can learn about nature and agriculture.
- You help preserve open space. Our agricultural landscape will survive only as long as farms are financially viable. When you buy locally grown food, you are doing something proactive about preserving the agricultural landscape.
- It is educational. For the past 100 years most New Zealanders have been increasingly distanced from their food. A CSA is a direct link between rural farmer and an urban family. Through our website and regular newsletters and farm days you and your family have a chance to feel part of the farm and learn about seasonal growing and growing issues that we face on a day to day basis.
- It benefits the environment and wildlife. Our organic farm is a place where the resources of fertile soil and clean water are valued. We grow cover crops to prevent erosion and replace nutrients used by our crops. Additionally, the habitat of our farm provides a home for wildlife.
- It is an investment in our future. By supporting local farmers today, you can help ensure that there will be farms in your community tomorrow, and that future generations will have access to nourishing, flavourful, and abundant food.
Join our CSA - fill in this form to become a harvest share subscriber!