(weekly breakdown and investment return below)
We believe that through our CSA we are able to grapple with some of the thorny issues that persist in farming and food consumption in America. For instance, local food and organic food is often seen as too expensive, sometimes prohibitively so. Although many Americans today understand that the playing field for small-scale and large-scale agriculture is not level regardless of this they must confront the financial realities of their lives and make purchasing decisions accordingly.
The problem of high retail cost of organic food is something that organic growers can confront proactively through their CSA. By simply providing members with a surplus of vegetables slightly greater in value than the weekly cost of their CSA share helps lighten the blow of retail costs required for small farmers to make a decent living.
When farmers have good years their is plenty of surplus to go around, especially with high-yielding, perishable crops like tomatoes, peas, squash, peppers, and eggplant. Simple supply and demand economics assert that cost comes down while surplus is high, but when supply is perishable why not share the wealth? So every week our CSA members receive investment returns in the form of extra purchasing points at the pick-ups or heavy bags of additional items pouring out of the fields in bountiful years like 2015. When you extrapolate the returns to effect the retail cost (say $3 per pound for tomatoes) what you gain in surplus reduces the retail cost of all the produce at the pick-up for the member.
Below is the weekly breakdown of the 2015 26-week CSA season spanning from June-November. Consider the return a giant Thank You for your support and we hope that the produce made you happy and healthy.
Here are the details:
Full Share. $685 for 26 weeks = $26.35/week investment.
Three-Quarter Share. $530. $20.38/week investment.
Half-Share. $350. $13.46/week investment.
Weeks: Here is what the Full-Share members actually received in 2015. You can extrapolate down for Three-Quarter and Half-Shares.
Week 1 : $42.50 Week 2 : $30 Week 3: $26 Week 4: $35 Week 5: $34 Week 6: $34 Week 7: $32
Week 8: $36 Week 9: $32 Week 10: $34 Week 11: $35 Week 12: $40 Week 13: $46!! Week 14: $42
Week 15: $35 Week 16: $36 Week 17: $32 Week 18: $32 Week 19: $32 Week 20: $28 Week 21: $24
Week 22: $24 Week 23: $24 Week 24: $24 Week 25: $25 Week 26: $30
Total Cash Value of Produce Received : $844.50
Total Return : $844.50 – $685 = $159.50 per Full Share Member (23% return on your investment… not bad, right?!?)