Canada's First Grain CSA Transports Via Sailboat and Triples Demand in Second Year

Sun Shining on Deck of Sailboat Carrying CSA Grain Photo

Image via: Jon Steinman, Deconstructing Dinner

Jeff reported on the launch of this unique(ly) Candadian CSA, Urban Grains, that brings grain to shareholders, roughly this time last year. While a grain CSA is unique, this one is extra special because all of the grain is transported via sailboat - talk about cutting their carbon footprint and their fuel costs. What he and they didn't count on was that the program would be so wildly popular that they are tripling their supply in only their second year.During the first year, customers were offered a share in the company, essentially 100 lbs of five grains for just $125. Additional shares could be purchased which included legumes like lentils. Over 200 shares were purchased the first year, and this year over 450 shares have been purchased by individuals and an additional 150 share have been purchased by 8 businesses. Due in part to the success of this CSA, Vancouver also launched a similar grain CSA this year.

Grain CSA Unloaded From Kootenay Lake Photo
Here's the kicker: All of the transportation (via sailboat) was done by volunteers. People in the community who are members of the local Kootenay Lake Sailing Association saw the project and just wanted to get involved. They thought it would be fun to help transport all of that grain, and a great way to help their community and their community farmers. The journey took 3 days for all 4 sailboats, carrying 5,000 lbs of grain, to cross the Kootenay Lake, one of the largest inland water bodies in Canada. This year, the fleet will triple in size, with at least 12 sailboats already on board for the journey, as they plan to once again bring their grain to market, while kicking their oil addiction.

If you'd like to get involved, the ships will be entering the Kuskanook Harbour, this Saturday, October 17 and then sailing on to the Prestige Lakeside Resort on Sunday, but they can use your help unloading all of the grain. Last year, 50 people from the community came out to help welcome the sailers and to help with the harvest. :Urban Grains
More on Community Supported Agriculture
Join a Community Supported Agriculture Coop
From Community Supported Agriculture to a Community Supported Kitchen
How to Find the Best CSA for You
Support From City Folk Takes Root On The Farm

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