csa – community supported agriculture in gainesville
What the heck is Sliding Scale for the Start Up Fee???
At Siembra Farm one of our core principles is food accessibility. That is, everyone regardless of economic status, race, gender, etc., has the right to nutritious food. While we are a business and need to make money to survive, we also strive to strike a balance between accessibility and profit. We want to get a fair price for our organic vegetables but we also want all people to be able to afford to eat well. Part of our plan to achieve this goal is our sliding scale policy for CSA members’ annual start up fee . CSA stands for community supported agriculture and traditionally, a CSA member is required to pay for the entire season (or part of the season ie Fall, Winter, Spring) up front. This gives the farmer income they can depend on and a sense of financial security. While we think this is a great idea, we also acknowledge that it significantly restricts accessibility to becoming a CSA member. So we presented a new model where our customers can pay as they go and can also pay different amounts for the start up fee based on their income/financial situation. (more on that a little later…) This is also why we require a membership/start up fee at the beginning of each CSA season (we consider our season to be mid October through June). The membership/start up fee allows us to recuperate costs we put into the farm at the beginning of the season. Costs like seeds, soil, irrigation supplies that are necessary to get the farm going before we have CSA income coming in. Since we do not require CSA members to pay for the entire season up front, the start up fee is also a way for the customer to feel committed to sticking with us for the whole season.
Now, for the nitty-gritty of the sliding scale. The idea is that if a UF professor pays $150 for their annual start up fee that allows a single mom earning $10 per hour to pay $50 for her fee. And better yet, you also have the option of working the membership fee off on the farm. Anyone interested in the work trade option for start up fee should be sure to contact Veronica at email@example.com prior to registering. We hope this has shed some light on why we do things the way we do. We don’t require folks to provide income verification to prove what they choose to pay for the start up fee. It is an on-your-honor type of system. We are pleased at how it’s worked out so far. Big thanks to all of you who willingly choose to pay at the top of the sliding scale. We hope to always be able to be as flexible as we’ve been thus far. Cheers!
Also, if you are signing up late in the season feel free to pay low end of the scale
Coupon Codes for Start Up Fee:
$50 Start Up Fee Coupon Code fiftydollarstart
$100 Start Up Fee Coupon Code 100dollarstart