A little background
For over 25 years, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) has become a popular way for consumers to buy local, seasonal food directly from a farmer. Typically the farmer offers a certain number of “shares” to the public who can then become members of the CSA. This arrangement creates several rewards for both the farmer and the consumer. The farmer receives payment early in the season, which helps with the farm's cash flow. The members get to eat healthy food and have an opportunity to get to know the people who grow their food.
In 2011 we started a Brewers Supporting Agriculture (BSA) project. It was primarly a way to directly link a brewer to a farmer and field. It has grown and evolved over the last 5 years. Each spring we ask local brewers to commit to a portion of the year's crop which helps us to commit to growers. With an upfront investment of $500 and a commitment to use a percentage of the year's crop, we can pass this money along to our new growers to help with the cost of seed.
The rich and continued growth of local malting grain would not be here without the support of these brewers. Their investment and commitment promotes the type of food system we strive to create together. This system starts with direct connections between growers and brewers who share a concern for our soil, conservation of land, sustainable farming practices and pricing structure that allows growers to run a viable business and offer a good way of life for future generations.
BSA 2016 is underway!