Thursday, April 30, 2015

GardenShare offers subsidy on CSA shares from local farms

GardenShare still has room for more families to receive a subsidy to purchase a share in a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farm in the area.  The concept of a CSA is that a household can purchase, in advance, a share of the farmer's crop for the season and then pick up a box of produce each week during the growing season.  This helps the farmer plan what and how much to grow and gives the farmer the upfront cash to get the season started.  And, generally, it's a win for the consumer who will get more than their money's worth over the course of the season.

However, for a family on a tight budget, paying for the whole season's worth of produce in the spring can pose a challenge.  For families who qualify, GardenShare's "Bonus Bucks" will offer a subsidy of $50 on CSA shares costing $200 or less and $100 for shares that cost more than that.

To qualify, the total gross yearly income of all household members cannot exceed the following levels:
                Household of          1              Income of                $30,000
                                                2                                              $37,000
                                                3                                              $44,000
                                                4                                              $51,000
                                                5 or more                                 $58,000

An income-eligible household would then select one of the following farms. Each farm is a little different with different prices, various pick-up locations and times, and a different number of weeks included in the share.  So it is important for the consumer to pick the farm that works best for their household.  After selecting a farm, the household submits an application to the farm with payment for their share of the cost.  The farmer will give the application to GardenShare for reimbursement of the subsidy portion.

CSA Farms taking part in the program include:
                Birdsfoot Farm, Canton, 315-386-4852
                Bittersweet Farm, Heuvelton, 315-344-0443
                Fullers Farm, Canton 315-379-1412
                Kent Family Growers, Lisbon, 315-212-7502
                littleGrasse Foodworks, Canton, 315-386-3513
                Steps 2 Grow, Ogdensburg, 315-394-0597
                Whitten Family Farm, Winthrop, 315-328-5559

This program is generously supported by Price Chopper's Golub Foundation, Stewarts, Potsdam Youth Philantrhopy Council, Corning, and individual GardenShare supporters.

For more information on this or other GardenShare programs, visit