CSA time is here

February 28, 2014

Spring is only a couple weeks away. That means farmers will soon begin harvesting greens, asparagus, strawberries and more to sell to grocers, at farmers tailgate markets, and to pack directly for their CSA—or Community Supported Agriculture—farm share subscribers.

To help those interested in a CSA find the right one for them, the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project is hosting its third High Country CSA Fair from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 4, at the Agriculture Conference Center in Boone. The free family-friendly event is an opportunity to meet High Country farmers, learn about different CSA programs and products, and purchase a share or shares.

Family farms offering traditional CSAs provide the chance to sign up for a season and receive a box of produce straight from their farm every week.

CSA farmers offer convenient pick-up or delivery schedules for the steady supply of farm-fresh foods, and many feature add-on options including eggs, cheese and meats. Today, there are a growing number of CSAs moving beyond the traditional model with varied subscription sizes and flexible sign-up options.

This fair, sponsored by ASAP, provides the opportunity to ask local CSA farmers what makes them different.

The following six diverse CSA providers are slated to attend the fair: Creeksong Farm (Watauga), Farm at Mollies Branch (Todd), High Country CSA (Western N.C.), Lively-Up Now Farm (Valle Crucis), North Fork Farm (Zionville), and Tap Roots Farm (Old Fort). All participating farms have pickup locations in Boone, as well as other areas. Grandfather Vineyard Winery (Banner Elk) will be on hand for a wine tasting.

The event is sponsored by Storie Street Grille and Carolina Farm Credit. To learn more about the fair and ASAP’s work, visit

Those unable to attend can browse farms offering CSAs in ASAP’s online Local Food Guide at; the new 2014 print guide hits stands in early May.