By Michelle M. Sharp, Founder and Content Creator of Meet the Minnesota Makers

Have you made your summer CSA plans yet? 

Your local farmers and producers are already planning their seasons. They’ve ordered seeds, high tunnels are loaded with baby plants. 

Your support makes the difference in their ability to provide a more sustainable product. 

Sustainable doesn’t mean organic—though it can. 

Sustainable here means locally sourced, short transportation, minimal soil disruption, animals that live outdoors, and eating with Minnesota’s seasons.

In the winter issue of Edible Minnesota, I shared what it means to  be a farm that follows the CSA model. 

“The CSA model allows us to build a more sustainable business model for TC Farms and all of our partners,” explained Jack McCann. “With a CSA we can make it possible for the farmers to thrive and the consumers to trust their purchases.”

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms and businesses are real life examples of individuals collaborating at the local level to support the common good and build thriving communities. Through the CSA model a farm becomes the community’s farm. 

As digital technology eliminates the physical borders that divide us and mechanical technology makes megafarms possible, CSAs connect consumers and food producers at the local level. The USDA defines a CSA as a “farm operation that becomes, either legally or spiritually, the community’s farm.” 

In return for their investment, the consumer receives a share of the farm’s products on a weekly, every other week, or monthly basis. This share integrates them into a community of similarly-focused individuals. 

The following list offers a sampling of the variety of CSAs available to Minnesotans. Visit to find a CSA provider near you! 

The Black Radish is an urban farm that consists of a dozen converted yards that yield a 12-14 week growing season for share members. Homeowners receive a share of the harvest. Member pick-up is also unique, as each receives a large tote bag and is invited weekly to a central location in Minneapolis to choose their own produce according to their needs.

Companion Breads CSB is a registered cottage baker producing breads baked in a backyard brick oven. Owner Bryce Johnson spent three months studying artisanal bread and community ovens in Europe during a pastoral sabbatical. He uses this experience to offer.  6-week subscriptions ranging from breakfast, whole grain and heritage grain breads. Local pickup in Mahtomedi. 

EarthTani CSB members enjoy a monthly share which includes a yeasted loaf of bread, cookies, and a seasonal bake in the form of a coffee cake, pie, or frosted cake. Owner Toni Luschen is a registered cottage baker who sources from her garden and the St Paul Farmers Market for her seasonal products. A full menu of special order offerings is available in addition to CSB shares. Delivery to Minneapolis and St Paul. Pick up also available.

Featherstone Farm offers certified organic vegetable shares with an egg add-on available. Spring, summer and winter shares are available with an extensive drop site network throughout the Twin Cities, Rochester, and Winona. Specialty products include frozen watermelon juice and cover crop flour.

Green Earth Growers is a Certified Naturally Grown program that started as a wholesale greenhouse plant growing business. Members choose from full or half fresh flower or vegetable shares. An additional offering is a Worker Share, which allows the member to invest through work hours as a trade for a full vegetable share. On site pick up or drop sites throughout the Twin Cities.

Heather’s Home Goods creates pop up boxes that make the most of Embarrass’s 71-day growing season. Boxes are a combination of fresh produce and cottage producer goods  including breads, turnovers, jams, and salsas. Follow Heather’s Facebook page for box availability. Pick up at homestead or at a drop site in Virginia. SNAP/EBT accepted.

Honeydew Field is a regenerative agriculture farm that gardens to replenish soil health. Their fresh summer flower bouquet ‘Fresh from the Field Club’ comes in weekly and bi-weekly  subscription options. Together, Mama and her Mini create vibrant bouquets varying in color and floral palettes each week. Pick up available at various Central Minnesota businesses.

KDE Farms is a family-owned business providing beef, pork, chicken, and combination CSA shares. Two six month shares are available per year. KDE offers monthly home delivery of their frozen product, which alleviates the storage issues of buying a full or half animal directly from a farm. Home delivery within a 20 mile radius of their Hugo farm.

Night Owl: Vegetable baskets are delivered in thrifted baskets with thrifted fabric liners. Vegetable and flower CSAs. Bread, eggs, and maple syrup add-ons. Heirloom tomatoes and garlic are signature items. Pick ups in Twin Cities. Home delivery available in northern Twin Cities metro.

Shepherds Way Farms offers their award-winning sheep’s milk cheese in monthly cheese boxes with drop sites throughout the Twin Cities, Northfield and Rochester. Six month or one year subscriptions directly through the farm are offered. Each cheese CSA box comes with recipes tested by cheesemaker Jodi Ohlen Read featuring the included cheeses.

Spring Wind Farm CSA members enjoy on-farm, farmers’ market style pick up for their fruit and vegetable shares. Access to u-pick crops like green beans, fresh flowers, and hot peppers included in subscription. Spring Wind Farm also partners with Community Action Center to fund shares at no cost to local families.

TC Farms is a partnership network of regional farms providing customers with “the very best meat, veggies, and dairy.” The annual membership provides access to this extensive cooperative. Home delivery on a weekly, biweekly or monthly basis to St. Cloud, Rochester, and Twin Cities metro.

Trumpeter Swan Farm is a year-round CSA program offering full and half shares of veggies, eggs, and storage crops. Their unique Farm Savings Account allows subscribers to make monthly payments to decide how much to include in each box  as they customize their choices.

Read the full article at 

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