Under the stewardship of Nick Gooderham, we began to shift the delicious veg box scheme he was delivering into a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) scheme. The aims were to provide top quality veg that supported wildlife and biodiversity, got people involved with the farm and created sustainable livelihoods for the farmers who grew the food. We became a collective of 4 women running the project: Jenny Gellatly, Mel Harvey, Zoe Jong and Laura Creen. We’ve grown the farm from 20 members to 50 and in 2016 we’re ready to grow again up to 67 members. Our provision of training has expanded too. We work with local colleges, Bicton and Schumacher, to provide year round vocational horticulture courses and apprenticeships, as well as providing our own trainee grower positions and internships. Our horizons of possibility keep opening up, so you never know where we’ll be in a few years.
Why do we love Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)?
Community supported agriculture (CSA) is a partnership between farmers and the local community, where the responsibilities, risks and rewards of farming are shared. Benefits are enjoyed by all sides: farmers for instance can receive a more stable and secure income and closer connection with their community, and consumer members can benefit by eating fresh healthy food, feeling more connected to the land where their food is grown and learning new skills.
How is our CSA radically different than the supermarket?
We don’t put a monetary value on our veg, which means that, instead of packing up a box of veg that is equal to £15, we ask members to subscribe to the farm for £450/year and for that we’ll do our best to grow as many vegetables as humanly possible with as much variety as possible to tickle your palette for as long as the weather will allow. Each week we divide up what is ripe and share it out equally with our members. If the weather is terrible our members know we’ve done our best and accept a smaller harvest, and if the weather is amazing then our members are rewarded for their commitment with a share of the abundance on the farm. Your share of the harvest will vary from week to week, season to season, and year to year. In 2016 if the weather behaves itself we’ll be harvesting for our members from June until December.
Share the Fun
This farm is for you. We work hard because we believe in serving our community, and we love meeting our members and their families and friends. If you want to get involved here are a few ways to do it: volunteer days, seasonal work parties, open days, tours, vocational courses, become a trainee grower. We keep in touch via our e-newsletter, facebook, twitter and blogs, so sign up, like us, follow us and find us on the net.
Share the Farm
By becoming a member of the CSA you’re not just sharing in the harvest – it’s so much bigger than that! We are inviting you to share time with us at the farm, build relationship with the seasons, the land, yourself and the local community. It’s a whole new connection with food, farming and community.