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A judge rules on a controversial citizenship question for the 2020 Census; some fishing communities expect to feel the effects of the government shutdown; and new climate concerns as Antarctic ice is melting faster than we thought.

Daily Newscasts

Buying Straight From the Farm: A Growing Trend in CT

March 1, 2011

CHESHIRE, Conn. - As little signs of spring are spotted around Connecticut, many folks' thoughts turn to planting and sowing. The popularity of eating locally-grown food continues to rise, and the number of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms has tripled in the state in recent years.

In the CSA model, people buy "shares" in a farming operation at the beginning of the growing season, meaning they share the business risks of the season with the farmer. In return, farmers provide a regular supply of fresh, natural produce. Brenda Caldwell of the Boulder Knoll Farm, a CSA in Cheshire, says her membership grew from 34 to 50 in one year.

"One of the good things about the growth of the CSA movement is that it allows people who are running small farms to make it, and to develop a clientele that really is involved in that particular farm. "

Caldwell supplies members with vegetables, and she partners with a farmer in Meriden to provide fruits. Other CSAs provide dairy products, and some are moving to year-round production. Not only has Caldwell's operation grown; she says she sees growth all around her.

"I know three or four new CSAs which have started in the last three or four years, right in this general area, besides me."

She adds that many CSAs, including her own, allow or require members to put in some work on the farm as part of their payment for their shares.

Melinda Tuhus/Chris Thomas, Public News Service - CT