As a part of the Reimagining Cleveland project, the Heart of the City CSA was formed as a joing effort between two of Cleveland’s urban farms, Urban Growth and Erie’s Edge (also participants in Reimagining Cleveland). The collaboration was designed to provide the public with fresh, local vegetables on a weekly basis for 25 weeks of the year. A CSA or Community Supported Agriculture refers to an agreement between farmers and locals whereto citizens will pay up-front with the promise that they will be provided with a full-seasons worth of fresh produce. The benefits of a CSA are twofold, for the farmers, they have the necessary capital to purchases seeds, supplies, equipment, etc that is needed to take full advantage of the growing season and the public gains access to fresh produce and the option to try new vegetables they may not typically find from a grocery store.
The produce a participant will receive is dependent upon the current growing season. Some of the items that an applicant can expect are:
- salad mix
- spring onions
- snap peas
- heirloom tomatoes
- summer squash
- baby spinach
- winter squash
Further, participants will receive a half-dozen eggs ever other week and can also receive bonus items such as local honey or fresh fruit.
In order to participate in the Heart of the City CSA, citizens must complete an application and submit the full payment of $700 with the application or include a $200 deposit with the expectation that the remaining balance will be paid with the first pick-up. The organization is willing to work with wanting participants and are will to discuss more flexible payment options if necessary. Once an individual becomes a participant, they can pick up their weekly allotment at one of two location. If a participant misses their weekly pick-up the share is donated to other individuals (not necessarily CSA participants).