Membership Has It’s Privileges

Why did I first join a CSA? My girlfriend made me. Ok, she did not so much force me, as much as she led me to believe that if we did not join, my life would be considerably less pleasant for the foreseeable future.  As they say, “Mama didn’t raise no fool,” and shortly thereafter I found myself a member of my first CSA.

There were a lot of reasons I was hesitant to join, but the biggest one was simple: CSA’s are different than the traditional supermarkets I was used to. In most CSA’s, you pay for your share (typically one to two seasons worth of food) all at once, before the season begins. The food is seasonal – meaning you get what naturally comes out of the ground at that time of the year, and since my CSA, like most, partnered with a local farmer, that meant no tomatoes in June. Since I have an unnatural love of tomatoes, this was awful news. The food looks like it has just been harvested – it has – which means there may be a little more dirt on fruits and vegetables than we are accustomed to.  And of course there is a volunteer requirement (you mean I have to pay AND work for my food?!).

If CSA’s are so so different than traditional supermarkets and bodegas, why I am so excited to be a part of a CSA now? The first five reasons that come to mind are 1) it is affordable; 2) the food is delicious; 3) I get to “do something” in my community; 4) I feel like I am making a difference; and 5) it is different than a traditional supermarket.

We thought it would be cool if we made a “Why I joined my CSA, a regular series of posts that anyone can contribute to, so that is exactly what we are doing! Over the next few days, I will post more about my reasons for joining, but we would really love if you took the ball and ran with it – so feel free to comment or write your own post too!

Eat Well, Until We Meet Again,

JT

Mail in Your Forms!

Just a reminder that you CAN mail in your vegetable & fruit and/or eggmembership agreements and payments (Please note, you MUST secure your vegetable share BEFORE you may secure a fruit or egg share).  It is not necessary for you to come to a sign-up event to secure your spot!

You may mail your forms to:

New York City Coalition Against Hunger

50 Broad Street, Suite 1520

New York, NY 10004

Please make checks payable to “NYCCAH”.

Now Offering Fruit and Egg Shares!

We are excited to announce that our membership forms for fruit and egg shares are now available! Just submit your form and payment, and enjoy!

Unfortunately, we do not have adequate funding to subsidize fruit and egg shares.  If you are interested and able to sponsor either share for a fellow member, please contact Maia Raposo at mraposo@nyccah.org, or at 212.825.0028 ext 205.

Where in Central Brooklyn is the Central Brooklyn CSA?

The Central Brooklyn CSA has no geographical boundaries in terms of membership. Our distribution (food pick-up) location is the Hebron Seventh Day Adventist Church.

The Central Brooklyn CSA has no geographical boundaries in terms of membership. As long as you can make it on time to pick up your food (and just as importantly, meet your volunteer commitments), consider yourself a part of our community!

Our distribution (food pick-up) location is the Hebron Seventh Day Adventist Church. It is located on the corners of New York Avenue and Dean Street in the Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood in Brooklyn (11216).  Distributions take place on Wednesdays from 4:00 PM – 7:30 PM.  Our first pick-up will take place on June 16th!

How Are CSA’s So Cheap?

With the cost of groceries seemingly going up, up, and away, how can CSA’s offer fresh, low cost, healthy produce and more?

With the cost of groceries seemingly going up, up, and away, how can CSA’s offer fresh, low cost, healthy produce and more?

CSA stands for ”Community Supported Agriculture.” In a nutshell, CSA’s are cooperatives that pair communities with local farmers for low cost, fresh from the farm produce and other foods. (If you would like to learn more about CSA’s click here.) CSA’s help farmers plan what they plant, budget accordingly, and avoid taking out high risk loans. What farmers save in overhead costs, they are able to pass on in savings to their respective CSA’s.

CSA’s also use the collected efforts of their members to help further subsidize the cost of food. Often CSA member-volunteers do all the marketing, administration, and distribution work themselves. Again, the money that is saved by not hiring people to do these tasks is reflected in the relatively low cost of CSA foods.

In addition to our farmers and members, the Central Brooklyn CSA is supported by the New York City Coalition Against Hunger (NYCCAH). This unique partnership helps us offer different membership rates and payment plans for members of different incomes and even accept Food Stamps as payment!

That is how the Central Brooklyn CSA provides its members with low cost sustainably grown local produce. Simple, isn’t it?

Exactly How Much Does Central Brooklyn CSA Cost?

Do you know anyone who does NOT want to save money? Neither do we. In fact, like most of our friends, we are trying to do more with less. If that sounds like something you are into, the Central Brooklyn CSA may be just your style.

So how much does a membership cost? First, there are two categories for membership, Full and Half Shares.  No matter which type of membership you choose, your membership rate is based on your total household income (or the total income of all the adults who are sharing a share). Most members will make a ONE TIME payment at the beginning of the season, although members making less than $35,000 (including those using Food Stamps) have the option of paying in installments.

If you are paying with SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) Benefits (Food Stamps)

Full Share Half Share
22 Week Total : $120 22 Week Total: $60
Average Weekly Cost : $5.50 Average Weekly Cost : $2.70

NOTE: As of now, Members paying with SNAP benefits can pay week-to-week or bi-weekly!

If your total household income is less than $25,000 per year

Full Share Half Share
22 Week Total : $290 22 Week Total: $145
Average Weekly Cost : $13 Average Weekly Cost : $6.60

NOTE: As of now, Members in this income group can sign up for payment plans!

If your total household income is between $25,000 and $35,000 per year

Full Share Half Share
22 Week Total : $365 22 Week Total: $180
Average Weekly Cost : $16.60 Average Weekly Cost : $8.20

NOTE: As of now, Members in this income group can sign up for payment plans!

If your total household income is between $35,000 and $50,000 per year

Full Share Half Share
22 Week Total : $440 22 Week Total: $220
Average Weekly Cost : $20 Average Weekly Cost : $10

NOTE: Members in this income group must be paid in full by the beginning of the season.

If your total household income is greater than $50,000 per year

Full Share Half Share
22 Week Total : $485 22 Week Total: $240
Average Weekly Cost : $22 Average Weekly Cost : $10.90

NOTE: Members in this income group must be paid in full by the beginning of the season.

In short, no matter how much (or how little) you make, you would be hard pressed to find locally, sustainably grown fruit and vegetables for less!

Celebrate Earth! Festival At Brooklyn Children’s Museum

The Brooklyn Children’s Museum, New York City’s first “green” museum will celebrate the Earth during its Celebrate Earth! Festival, complete with special programs, an Eco-Fair, and family fun for all on April 24 and 25, from 11 AM- 4 PM.

During this worldwide celebratory weekend, visitors can participate in a variety of hands-on workshops that will inspire awareness of and appreciation for the planet’s resources and the ways people can care for them. With activities that explore the new green revolution, biodiversity, and sustainability practices, as part of our “go green” theme, the Museum is the place to be.


The Central Brooklyn CSA will be there with a Healthy Eating art project, information on CSAs, sign-up materials, and a few more surprises!  We hope you can make it out!