What is CSA?
The Penn's Corner CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) delivers weekly boxes of farm fresh produce to neighborhoods all around Pittsburgh from April through November. With a CSA membership, you will support over 30 area farms while receiving delicious products, along with a weekly recipes, cooking information, and updates of what will be in the box that coming week.
Penn's Corner CSA is expanding again this season. There will be more pickup locations offered in 2012, so please let us know if you are willing to be a new site. Also, please click on the following links to see a map and list of our pickup locations. Also, please note that the first eight weeks of CSA (April-mid June) may not be available at all locations. Please email us for clarification or confirmation.
The CSA deliveries will be on Wednesday afternoons starting in April. Each box wil have between 7-10+ items per week. Almost every week will include seasonal fruit and another non-vegetable items such as wild honey, free-range eggs, local cheese, or fresh pasta.
Thanks again for supporting your local farmers at Penn's Corner!
What type of food is in a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) box?
The Penn’s Corner CSA boxes contain a wide variety of fresh, seasonal food from local farms. Each week the CSA box contains a different assortment of seasonal vegetables, and there is usually at least one type of fruit as well. Our goal is to provide you with top quality produce in quantities that you can use. Remember, all the food is locally grown, which means that there will not be corn in May or strawberries in September. CSA equals seasonal eating, and that means eating everything in its prime season and peak flavor! In addition to fresh fruits and vegetables, the CSA box will also have regular installments of other farm products included—gourmet mushrooms, wild honey, local cheese, free-range eggs, fresh pasta, etc. The following link has some examples of CSA boxes from last season: CSA Menus.
How much food is in a weekly CSA box?
Each CSA box contains about 7-10 items a week. The variation depends upon the season and the specific items. If there are more high-value items in a particular week (such as peaches or salad mix or cheese), the number of items may be around 7. If there are more standard crops that week (such as cucumbers or peppers or onions), the number of items will be 10 or more.
How many people can a CSA box feed?
Depending on your eating patterns, a box will feed approximately 1-4 people, usually 2-3 people is a good number. But it is flexible. Some members use the CSA as their sole source of produce during the season. Others use it to supplement what they are already buying at farmer’s markets or the store.
When are the CSA pickup days and times?
CSA picku times will be confirmed closer to the beginning of the season. The proposed delivery day for 2012 is Wednesday. The pickup times vary by location as well. Usually the pickup window is between 3-7:30pm.
What if I can’t pick up my box during the allotted time? Or, what if I'm on vacation?
It is important to find a way to get your box during the stated time frame. If you cannot get to the pickup location on time or are out of town, we suggest sending a friend or family member in your place. It’s a great way to introduce the CSA to others. We cannot guarantee that CSA boxes will be available outside of the stated pickup time.
Is Penn's Corner CSA organic?
Incorporated in 1999, PCFA did not organize as an organic coop. Therefore, our growers use a variety of agricultural practices. Although not many Penn’s Corner growers are certified organic, many of them do follow the organic practices and principles. Many of them are Certified Naturally Grown, which is a similar, alternative certification program to organic. So, the vast majority of the CSA is chemical-free produce. However, we also include produce that is not necessarily grown organically.
Where is the CSA food coming from?
Penn’s Corner Farm Alliance is a cooperative of Southwestern PA farmers that market together in the Pittsburgh area. PCFA farms are in Allegheny, Washington, Beaver, Butler, Mercer, Armstrong, Indiana, Cambria, Clarion, & Westmoreland counties. The CSA produce comes directly from the farms to your neighborhood. The produce is collected and boxed on our member farms, and then taken directly to CSA pickup locations. The produce is never held in a warehouse or off-site facility.
Can I choose what’s in the CSA box?
At this time, there is not an option to choose what’s in your CSA box. We do, however, have the option for a vegan CSA. Other than that, we believe that with a good recipe (which we provide in our blog), you’ll learn to enjoy the diversity of produce in the CSA. Most members find new favorites in the CSA box.
How can I find information about cooking the produce in the CSA box?
The weekly CSA blog post always has recipes related to the specific items in each box. In addition to that, the internet is filled with wonderful recipes based on seasonal produce.
Where are the pickup locations for the CSA?
We keep an updated list of CSA pickup locations under the CSA tab of the website homepage. The exact locations are available upon request or during membership confirmation.
Can I be a CSA host site/pickup location?
Yes, we are looking for members who are willing to be a pickup location for CSA deliveries. Please let us know your address, and we can assess the possibility of adding your location to our delivery route.
What is required to be a host site/pickup location?
The short answer is, not much. It can be at your home or business. The CSA boxes simply need a cool, protected place that is easily accessible to members. It is not required to be present during the pickup, but it necessary to provide contact information in case we need to reach you. The members will return their empty boxes to the pickup location, so it is also necessary to have a bit of storage space for the CSA boxes. We typically accept sites with room enough for 10-20+ boxes (approximately 17”x 13”x 11” each). Please inquire, we can send your our Statement of Understanding for CSA hosts.