ours is a community supported farm, a CSA. we began our 14th season saturday at the metro nashville farmers market, i thought so much about the structure of our farm. we have always been a CSA, from our farm’s beginnings the majority of our income has come directly from people who support our farm with an annual commitment to eating with us. we have known and fed many of the same families for each of our past 13 years, we appreciate the intimacy of the connection between our farm and the folks that eat the food our farm produces. for us, this model works perfectly. we have the stability of a known customer base. we also knew we wanted the opportunity to attend a farmers market. commerce is exciting and we knew we needed it as part of our farming careers, so we incorporate both into our weekly trips. csa members pick up their shares at NFM and we set up a small retail stand where we sell excess produce and other farm products.
the weekly trip is a gruelling exercise for the family with the 2:30 alarm and 3:30 departure. this past week, our first, was also riddled with awful weather. we left a drizzly farm in the 50’s and the temperature dropped and precipitation increased steadily all the way south. we were underdressed and elated when faced with a 45 degree downpour: at 6 am we were the first to arrive and set up.
luckily the beauty of our CSA shines through the clouds. we spent from 8 am until noon surrounded by friends we hadn’t seen since late last fall. amongst the hugs and well wishes were cuddly new babes and the bulging waistlines of the newly pregnant. reunions and connections, old friends and new, a community regrouping as the days lengthen and summer seems close. the first market day is pure joy for us, the beginning of the season, the much anticipated moment when we gather our gear, start reaping what we sowed, and engage once again with our incredible community. for the next 19 weeks, the friday harvests and saturday deliveries define our week. the rhythm of these days is timeless and we are proud to join along with so many others as we share our ripest and freshest at market.