We have hosted Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) for local farms at our home for the last 8 years, so here are my 5 tips to get the most out of your subscription:
- Pick your food up during the pickup window. My home may be the pickup site, but it is also my home and having you rummage around at midnight outside my kids’ bedroom window because you didn’t make it during the pickup time is rude. So is coming three days later and expecting your box to be there. This is fresh food people, not canned staples. Also, fish doesn’t taste good three days later, even if it is in the cooler.
- Stack your boxes. Your mother doesn’t work here, and neither do I. I don’t get paid to host and I am not here to clean up after you. Take a moment to break down your box, stack it neatly with the others and keep my porch looking tidy. Boxes are picked up the following week when the new shares are dropped off, which means I have to look at your mess all week.
- Cancel your box when you are out of town. Honestly, I love the idea of sharing your bounty with a friend, but then you have to coach them in all the pickup etiquette, and frankly, your friends don’t care that much about locally grown, organic produce, else they would have subscribed themselves. Just cancel the box and be done with it.
- Take the box that belongs to you. Check the labels on the boxes and the clipboard, and only take the box that belongs to you. Look to make sure you are not taking someone else’s box by mistake. If there is something in the box you did not expect, double check the labels and make sure you have the right box.
- Take one, LEAVE ONE! The trade box is just that, a place to trade. If you don’t like something in your box and the CSA offers a trade box, the right thing to do is take the offending item out of your box, put it into the trade box and take a new item from the trade box that you would rather have. The trade box is not a free-for-all take-all-you-want situation. Be nice.
And bonus #6, Don’t block the driveway. That’s from my husband who often arrives home to find someone blocking our driveway “for just a minute” while they get their box. Those minutes add up. Just saying.
Are you a CSA host? Any recommendations you would add to this list?