NEWS / Food co-ops

The growing success of Community Supported Agriculture

CSA Network UK celebrates its last two years growing the community supported agriculture (CSA) movement in the UK. CSA farms reconnect the public with local food and support ecological farmers.

Maresa Bossano, CSA Network UK co-ordinator says: “The growth in the number of CSAs setting up over the last two years, as well the number of those contacting the CSA Network UK for advice, shows the public appetite for fresh, local food, as well as the dedication of small farmers producing sustainable food.”

CSA Network UK launched in Stroud in December 2013 as a new organisation, to promote community supported agriculture and support CSA schemes. It has been operating independently of the Soil Association since April 2015.

Achievements 2015 - 2017:

  • At least 15 new CSAs have started up
  • Nearly 100 CSA farms listed on the CSA Network UK map
  • Annual national CSA events raise awareness of Community Supported Agriculture
  • Mentoring programme provides one-to-one advice to new and existing CSAs
  • Training and networking events held at CSAs nationwide

What is a CSA?

The CSA movement began in the UK in the late-1990s to counter the negative effects of industrial agriculture by reconnecting people with fresh local food produced with ecological farming methods. 

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) comes in many shapes and sizes including one-acre shared fields, subscription veg box schemes, pig shares, and community-owned farms. 

The CSA model connects people to an ecological farm through a membership scheme which supports the farmer both with finance and community involvement. In return, members receive weekly fresh produce, and opportunities for volunteering, training, children’s activities, and celebratory events to mark the seasons.

CSA Network UK is reaching out to new supporters this summer

“With its abundance of fresh produce, summer is a great time to encourage supporters to join. The CSA Network UK is open to anyone who supports a fairer local food system. Supporters get discounts as well as the knowledge they are supporting the real food revolution.” Maresa Bossano

  • Find out more on their website
  • Find your nearest community supported agriculture farm on the CSA Network Map.
  • Link with the CSA Network UK on Twitter
  • Link with the CSA Network UK on Facebook
  • See CSA Network UK photos on Flickr

14/07/2017
Food co-ops

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Food co-ops: Building a network of community food co-ops and food buying groups across the UK to help new groups get off the ground and existing groups to thrive.

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