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Have any of you actually been successful with a CSA?

 
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I've read lots of people that are interested in it, and I've seen some of the people saying they make $$$ on YouTube, but have any of you actually made money?  Enough to justify it as a real business, so you can quit your dayjob or at least not have to get a second (or third) job to live?  Thanks for sharing on this.  It's so hard to find out from real people the real truth on things.
 
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Hi, Johann

I have seen some threads on the forum where folks are asking about boxes or bags to use for their CSA.

I feel your question would best be answered on the local scene.

Join a local CSA and find out how it works and then talk to the folks you are getting your box from.

I bet those folks would love to talk with you.
 
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Hi Johann,
There is a farm up the road from me that is a successful business. I don't think they are rich, but they are making it. They do CSA... but that is not all they do. They also sell seedlings in the spring and they have an intern program.

I would imagine it is possible to have a business that is pure CSA, but I honestly don't know of any that are only doing that. All the ones I know of, are also doing other things around the farm for additional sources of income. I don't think that is a bad thing either.
 
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Hi
Running a CSA for 7 years now. Business was going well until this year. Personal problems (health) in the crucial publicity period combined with economic challenges more general have made this my first non growth (economic :-p ) year since the start in 2016. Collegues have mentioned simullar challenges of people just not renewing or needing much more convincing where before they had a waiting list.

Some considerations:
- part time veggies = small scale and no winter growing probably, having to convince everyone to return after a few months super market ease.
- location location location. Growing veggies for self harvest in the middle of nowhere is not gonna work. Either move your field to the city or your veggies in boxes.
- make sure to get some schooling in market gardening somewhere and more important, some hands on experience. WWOOF is nice, but a volunteer isn't the samen as an intern!
- don't start too cheap. Seriously raising your price will scare off more people than starting with a fair price (also for you as a farmer) and keeping it fair.
- go fully hand tools on a very small scale (and no winter growing) or scale up enough to allow a tractor to be payed off. There is an in between zone where you can't afford a tractor but also can't get the work done without loads of free labor.

I haven't checked on your location, but when I'm talking 'winter', we are comparable to US zone 7 or 8 I think? Belgium, 52°N, but with a sea climate still at work. Winters are dark, with some frosts, but only a few days that it doesn't go abouf freezing.
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