CSA: Frequently Asked Questions

What is CSA?
CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. CSA is a partnership between a farm and a community of supporters that provides a direct link between the production and consumption of food. CSA members make a commitment to support the farm throughout the season and assume the costs, risks, and bounty of growing food along with the farmer. In return, the farm provides a healthy supply of seasonal fresh produce throughout the growing season. Becoming a member creates a responsible relationship between people and the food they eat, the land on which it is grown, and those who grow it.

Is CSA a good fit for me?
If you have a goal to eat seasonally, cook at home, support the local economy & sustainable agriculture, or try new vegetables, CSA could be a great fit for you. With CSA, the type and amount of vegetables offered in a share will vary from week to week depending on the season. The beginning of the season starts out lighter and naturally becomes heavier as the summer and fall bounty of vegetables are harvested. Every CSA is different. We offer our CSA buffet-style. This allows us to build in quite a bit of choice into each week (i.e.: We may offer head lettuce, bagged mixed greens, arugula, swiss chard, and three varieties of kale and say “choose 2 leafy greens”). At Echollective Farm, we make an effort to offer favorites such as lettuces, carrots, and asparagus alongside lesser known veggies like purple kohlrabi, broccoli rabe, and asian greens.

How do I join the CSA?
Registration can be done via mail or on our website. Follow this link to our CSA Sign-up and select the share that is right for you. Email us at echocsa@gmail.com if you’d prefer snail mail.

When does the CSA start and end?
Our 2020 Summer Share is 20 weeks, starting the week of May 3rd and ending the week of September 20th. Note that there is no share pick-up on the week of August 2nd. This August break allows us to focus on transitioning the farm into fall planting.
Our 2020 Fall Share is 6 weeks with a share each of the five weeks in October as well as a Thanksgiving share which will be available the week of November 15th.

Where do you deliver your CSA shares?
We deliver our CSA to Iowa City with pick-up located at the Iowa City Farmers Market (Wednesdays from 5-7pm and Saturdays from 7:30am-Noon). We also deliver to Cedar Rapids with pick-up located at NewBo City Market (Thursdays from 5:30-6:30pm). Our Farm Share CSAs are delivered market style. This means that we set up a table similar to a farmers market table filled with all of the CSA produce. This allows you to pick the size squash that you want, let’s us build in lots of choice (ie: pick two greens with choices of spinach, lettuce, green kale, purple kale, lacinato kale, or braise mix), and allows you to stick an item that you may not want as to avoid food waste.

What does a typical CSA share look like in early summer, late summer, and fall?
CSA looks different from year to year depending on many factors such as the weather. However, we have been doing CSA for over 15 years and thus we have a fairly good idea what our CSA will be offering you throughout the season.
Example of a May Share: Spring Lettuce Mix, Spinach, Choice of Arugula or more Lettuce Mix, Choice of Dill or Cilantro, Radishes, Asparagus, and Potatoes.
Example of an August Share: Green Kale, Basil, Carrots, Cucumbers, Choice of Yellow and/or Red Onions, Garlic Scapes, Garlic, Choice of Zucchini and/or Yellow Summer Squash, Cherry Tomatoes, Choice of Hot Peppers (Banana, Anaheim, Cayenne, Jalapeño, Serrano, Habanero), and Sunflowers.
Example of a November Share: Salad Mix, Choice of bunched or bagged kale, Onions, Garlic, Red Potatoes, Choice of a variety of Japanese Eggplants and/or Sweet Peppers, Hot Peppers, Choice Cabbage or Napa Cabbage, Carrots, Choice of Winter Squash (Spaghetti, Butternut, Pie Pumpkin, or, Kabocha, Fall Roots Choice (Diakon Radish, Purple Radish, Watermelon Radish, and/or Turnips).

Will I know how to eat the food in my share?
We help you make the most of your share by sending you a weekly CSA newsletter. It will include a listing of what you’re getting in the share that week, recipes that utilize the CSA items, storage tips, farm news, and more. Prior year newsletters can be found on our Facebook Page. We encourage you to review them to see if our CSA will be a good fit for you. You can also email us for more information, echocsa@gmail.com.

What if I think the share will be too much for me?
Several of our CSA members split their share. They simply find another person to split the share with weekly, or they take turns picking up the share every other week.

What if I can’t pick up CSA on a certain week?
If you cannot pick up your CSA share, please, feel free to send a friend, family member, or neighbor to pick-up in your place. It always helps to send us an email giving us a heads up (echocsa@gmail.com) if someone will be picking-up for you. Additionally, we donate any unclaimed shares to the local food banks each week. If you know you will be missing a CSA pick-up and would like to donate your share, please, email us ahead of time.

What if I am running late to pick-up my CSA?
If you are running late to pick-up your share, please, call Molly as soon as possible at 347-331-5115. She will do her best to accommodate you.