CSA FAQ

What is CSA?

CSA stands for Community-Supported Agriculture. It is a partnership between community members and farmers to share in the bounty and the risks of farming. CSA is a style of doing business that supports local farmers selling fresh food directly to members of the community. It minimizes the farmer’s need for the middleman and often-restrictive bank loans during the lean months, and therefore creates a more resilient local economy and food system.

To join a CSA, members make an investment in the spring, when farming output costs such as tools, labor, soil amendments, and seeds are high. In exchange, members get savings on fruit, vegetables, baked goods, meals, plants, and bouquets throughout the season, depending on the type of CSA they choose.

When can I use my CSA Card?

Our CSA Cards are flexible which means you can come in anytime we’re open and purchase anything you want with your prepaid card. With the Produce Plus CSA card, the additional discount will be applied every time you buy CCF produce.

Can I use my CSA card at local farmer’s markets?

Yes! You can use your CSA Card at our booth at the local farmers’ markets and at our farmstand and Hello Café. You don’t even need to bring your card to the farmer’s market to use it––we can just look your name up in our system and deduct from your card.

Can I use my CSA Card in the Hello Café?

​Absolutely! You can use your CSA Card to buy anything we sell in the Hello Café, Farmstand, and at our booth at the farmers’ markets. The only exclusions are that you cannot use your CSA Card to buy another CSA, or to pay for tuition-based education programs like Summer Day Camp or Cooking for Middle Schoolers.

Can I use my CSA card to buy another CSA or to pay for educational programs?

Your card can be used to buy anything we sell in the farmstand or at farmers’ market, but cannot be used to pay for tuition-based education programs (like summer camp) or another CSA. You can, however, use it to pay for our Little Farmers Program.

Do I save money with the CSA Card?

Yes! All CSA cards have a built-in 10% discount (for example, a payment of $225 will add a $250 spending credit to your CSA Card). Produce Plus CSA members also get several Produce Plus Bonuses throughout the season, including an additional 5 or 10% discount on all Cedar Circle produce through the end of the calendar year. Other bonuses vary season to season based on availability, but could include exclusive access to our PYO fields, member-only sales, and complimentary items.

What if I use up all the money on my card?

You can add value to your card in increments of $250 at any point during the season (you pay $225, we add $250 to your card). Simply mention you would like to add value to your CSA card in the farmstand and pay by card, cash or check.

If you have a Produce Plus CSA Card, you will continue to get any Produce Plus bonuses, including your Produce Discount, through the end of the calendar year, regardless of whether or not you add value to your card. Just make sure to give us your name at the register before you check out!

What if I don’t use up the balance on my card by the end of the year?

While we do encourage you to use up your card by the end of the calendar year, we understand that this is not always possible. Your remaining balance rolls over to the following year. Please note, however, that Produce Plus bonuses like the produce discount do not roll over.

Once I sign up, where and when do I get my CSA card?

​If you are a new CSA card member, you can plan to pick up your CSA card at the farmstand when we open for the season. Once you pick it up, you can start using it right away.

If you have had a CSA card in the past, we will add the value of your new CSA onto your existing card. Your new balance will be available to you when we open for the season. Please note: we do not need to have your card present to add the new CSA value, so even if you carry your card with you, your new balance will be available to you when you come to the farmstand in the spring.

Are there Early Bird benefits?

Yes, if you sign up for a Produce Plus CSA Card before the Early Bird deadline, you will get a 10% Produce Discount at the register through the end of the calendar year! (Compared to a 5% discount if you register between the deadline and June 1).

What produce do I get with my CSA card and will there be a pickup list?

One major benefit of our CSA Card is that you can choose the veggies you want, in whatever quantity works best for you. We’ll provide a list of suggested items for inspiration, but whether you stock up on flats of berries for your freezer or come in each week for your weekly veggies, the choice is yours!

If you need a reminder of what is in season, check here.

What if I go away during the summer or I’m not able to come in for a week or two?

It is totally fine to skip weeks! While we love seeing you every day, you can use the card whenever it is most convenient for you—whether you come every day, or a few times per season, your card will be at the farmstand waiting for you.

I have gotten a traditional CSA box in the past. Which CSA card do you recommend?

We recommend a Produce Plus (P+) CSA Card because it is the best deal for produce enthusiasts. In addition to the debit-style card with the built-in 10% discount, a Produce Plus Card comes with Produce Plus Bonuses. The most important one is a 5 or 10% discount at the register on all Cedar Circle Farm produce through the end of the calendar year. If you plan to buy additional items besides your weekly produce, you should factor that in when deciding which card to purchase. Remember, you can always add to your card throughout the season if you use up your balance.

Need help deciding if a CSA Card is a good fit for you and your family? Click here.

Why did Cedar Circle switch to CSA Cards?

We want a CSA membership to give you a good deal on what you want not what we think you want. Over the years, we noticed that our members were becoming increasingly interested in the free choice CSA option. It just makes more sense for lots of people.

The free-choice model also allows us to farm more sustainably. This is a big one for us. We are a certified organic farm, which means we have to adhere to certain standards anyway, but it is important to us to go beyond organic certification and strive to farm in the way that is best for our land, our employees, and our community. The CSA Card model allows us to increase crop diversity, create less produce waste, increase crop rotation and cover cropping, increase labor efficiency, and reduce packaging and administrative time.