Community Supported Agriculture Toolkit for Tasmanian Communities Launched

Feeding a stronger and more resilient community

Knowing that the vegetables that your family eat are grown sustainably, free from chemicals and by a grower living in your community surely sounds too good to be true.
Community groups Channel Living and North West Environment Centre believe this will become a widespread reality with the launch today of the Community Supported Agriculture Toolkit for Tasmanian Communities website at the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens in Hobart.
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a sustainable food system where consumers make a genuine commitment to food-producers, sharing the risk of growing food.
Channel Living spokespersonZoe Magnussaid while the most obvious benefit to the consumer is local, fresh, healthy and environmentally sound food, CSAs also generate closer ties between farmer and consumer, building stronger communities with social, economic and environmental resilience.
“CSA programs are widespread in the USA where they have been popular since the 1970s and it's a shame Australia has taken so long to adopt this great system, but CSA programs are gradually being initiated here too.
"It's a huge amount of work to set up a CSA program, but the benefits are really worth it, so we wanted to create a resource that would give genuine assistance to farmers or community groups wanting to start their own CSA,” Ms Magnus said.
The Toolkit is a collection of resources designed to help communities and vegetable growers save time and resources when setting up their own CSA program. The tools include spreadsheets; samples; templates; seasonal calendars; further reading suggestions and; database software to assist in the management of a new CSA.
"Perhaps the most exciting thing about CSA is that it encourages more small to medium scale agriculture, enabling Tasmanian communities to better equip themselves when fuel prices make food transportation prohibitively expensive.
“We are really excited that the Tasmanian Food Security Council funded this project as we believe it will make a big difference to the way that food is grown and accessed throughout Tasmania," Ms Magnus said.
To find out more about Community Supported Agriculture and the Toolkit, go to:
 Further Information:
The CSA Toolkit launch will be held at the Royal Tasmanian Botanical GardensRiverview Room – Monday 21 November 1.30pm –Phone: 0407 323 761 or 0421 583 050

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