A successful CSA operation requires much more than growing great food. Many farmers feel that one of the chief advantages of a CSA is a ready supply of up-front cash at the beginning of the season, but it is an advantage that only comes as a result of lots of hard work and planning. The following resources provide details on the planning, marketing, customer management, and distribution systems that accompany a flourishing CSA program.
Community Supported Agriculture from ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture: This publication provides a foundation and tools for farmers looking to begin a CSA operation. It also explores many variations to the traditional model that have developed over the last generation and looks into what the future might hold for CSA.
Rural Guide to Community Supported Agriculture from University of Wyoming: A comprehensive guide to managing a CSA.
Be a Part of a CSA manual from Urgenci: Supporting booklet for training on Community Supported Agriculture (European resource)
Pricing Determination for CSA Share Boxes from Iowa State University
CSA Models: Choosing the right distribution method for your members from CSA Solutions Hub. Many farms mix-and-match their CSA program to suit their personality and growing season, this resource provides a summary of 11 common CSA models and a list of fundamental questions to ask when designing a CSA program.
Building a Legally Resilient CSA Program Workbook from Farm Commons: Farm-based Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs are incredibly valuable for sustainable farmers who want to build strong relationships with their community. This workbook explores ways we can keep that trajectory strong by resolving the varied and unique legal issues of CSA. We explore a range of potential issues including making the sale, sharing risk, offering gift certificates, dealing with securities laws, managing drop sites, combining farm product, working with volunteers, hosting events, and managing food safety. Through a workbook-style that encourages farmers to reflect on their own priorities and risks, this resource empowers CSA farmers to move forward in creating a strong, resilient CSA program.
Why Your CSA Needs a Membership Agreement and How to Write One from CSA Solutions Hub
A Farmer’s Guide to Marketing through Community Supported Agriculture (CSAs) from the University of Tennessee. Pages 3-7 of this guide covers information on what constitutes a share, how to handle substitutions, packaging shares, and pricing shares.
Roxbury Farm Information for CSA farmers on crop plans, greenhouse plans, and field plans for providing members a variety of crops throughout the season.