Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) as defined by the European CSA Research Group in 2015 “is a direct partnership between a group of consumers and producer(s) whereby the risks, responsibilities and rewards of farming activities are shared through long-term agreements.
Generally operating on a small and local scale, CSAs aim at providing quality food produced in an agroecological way.” The newly published report - the first of its kind - reveals that CSA in Europe is a dynamic movement that feeds between 500.000 and 1 million eaters* with thousands of initiatives operating and many new initiatives starting every week.
CSA can be seen as important new approach to creating sustainable and sovereign food systems. This report includes reports from 22 countries with authors who are involved in CSA as researchers/farmers/activists.
Access to Land is closely connected to CSA in many ways:
- CSA is a way to ensure access to land through a group of people who engage one or several new farmers. That the group of CSA members ensures that the costs of farming are fully or partially covered and that a considerable share or the full harvest is taken, gives the new entrant(s) to farming the opportunity to start the business. Access to land and farming (and distribution) is enabled.
- CSA enables established farmers to maintain (organic) farming by giving them a more secure business model and reducing market pressures.
- CSA models with a high degree of participation of the members gives access to knowledge in agriculture. This has led to examples where CSA members have pursued professional training and have become farmers themselves.
- CSA projects have had and still have close ties with organisations that are engaged with access to land like Terre de liens in France and Soil Association in the UK.
A printed version is being planned.
"You can also download the pdf version of the report here or here.
Overview of CSA in Europe