Frequently Asked Questions
What is a CSA?
CSA stands for “Community Supported Agriculture”.
For over 25 years, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) has become a popular way for consumers to buy local, seasonal food directly from a farmer. Although this concept began on vegetable farms, many small-scale livestock operations have adopted this model for the same benefits. Typically the farmer offers a certain number of "shares" to the public. The share consists of a box of whatever the farmer is harvesting. Interested consumers purchase a share (aka a "membership" or a "subscription") and in return receive a box (bag, basket) of locally produced wares each week throughout the farming season.
This arrangement creates several rewards for both the farmer and the consumer. In brief...
Advantages for consumers:
- Eat ultra-fresh food, with all the flavor and vitamin benefits, that only a local farm can provide
- Discover new foods and new ways of cooking
- Visit local farms
- Develop a relationship with the farmer who grows their food
- Learn more about how food is grown
Advantages for farmers:
- Market the food early in the year, before their 16 hour days in the field/pasture begin
- Receive payment early in the season, which helps with the farm's operations
- Meet the people who eat the food they grow
- Sell whole animals
It's a simple enough idea, but its impact has been profound. Tens of thousands of families have joined CSAs, and in some areas of the country there is more demand than there are CSA farms to fill it.
What’s better about buying my meat through this CSA vs. Earth Fare or Whole Foods?
Simply put, local is better. With all the confusion over labels, you really don’t know what you are getting. Big AG is getting smarter about what buzz words we like and how to skirt around authentic certifications to paint a picture of their “farm” that makes us purchase products we would be appalled by if we really knew how it was raised/grown. If it’s local, you can personally visit these farms and decide for yourself. Not only is it better for the environment, because we don’t have to travel thousands of miles to deliver to all the groceries across the U.S., it’s better for you because you get freshest product available.
What is a meat share?
A meat share is a collection of locally, sustainably raised meats. Each bag will include a selection of grassfed beef and pastured pork & whole chickens.
We offer three sizes of meat shares.
Value Share: A value meat share is designed for a single or two-person household or a family on a budget. It includes about 21 - 24 pounds of meat (distributed over three months). All the meat will be frozen.
Half Share: A half meat share is designed for a family that eats meat about three times per week or has limited freezer space. It includes about 30 - 33 pounds of meat (distributed over three months). All the meat will be frozen.
Full Share A full meat share is the best value if you eat meat more frequently or have extra storage capacity. It includes about 55 - 58 pounds of meat (distributed over three months). All the meat will be frozen.
What will my share look like?
Value Share (each month) includes:
~1 qt. of Stock
~4 lbs. of Birds & Braise
~3 lbs. of Sausage & Grind
Half Share (each month) includes:
~2 lbs. of Steaks & Primes
~6 lbs. of Birds & Braise
~4 lbs. of Sausage & Grind
Full Share (each month) includes:
~4 lbs. of Steaks & Primes
~10 lbs. of Birds & Braise
~7 lbs. of Sausage & Grind
The “mystery” element is that you don’t know what species or exact cut you’ll get – your expensive cuts might be beef filet mignon one month, and then pork loin chops the next month. The moderate cut might be beef spare ribs one month and then pork shoulder the next. So we encourage people to dust off a good recipe book and dig in!
Can I give preferences?
Yes! Please email us at email@example.com and let us know if there is something you are dying to try or absolutely distain. Please stay flexible and adventurous if you can!
Do you have recipe suggestions?
For tips on cooking grassfed beef click here
Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon
The Cook's Illustrated Meat Book
Will I have enough freezer space?
Our half share usually fits in one plastic Kroger bag and the full share takes up about 2 plastic Kroger bags.
Can I split my share with another person/family?
If you think a meat share will be too much food for your family, you can find somebody to split a share with you. While roasts and whole chickens tend to be large, most other cuts are in 1-pound packages, so as long as you're comfortable negotiating a bit with your splitter, we're confident you can find a way to split it up!
Where do I pick up my meat?
All pick ups are at Normal Bar on designated Monday afternoons.
What if I can’t pick up my share?
We strongly encourage you to have someone pick up your share for you. If that is not an option please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will make other arrangements.
Can I visit the farms?
Absolutely! Please email us or the other farmers directly to set up a day and time to come visit our operations.
Can I volunteer?
Of course! Please email us and we can set up a date and time!