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Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) refers to a local system or network in which community members support local agriculture. In a CSA system, consumers support farmers financially by becoming CSA members and paying a fixed fee in advance, and in return farmers share their crops with the consumers. In addition to receiving fresh produce, consumers who participate in CSA gain the satisfaction of feeling directly connected to agricultural production as well as a sense of connection with the earth. Meanwhile, advantages for farmers include a predictable income, even when practicing organic agriculture, characterized by an unpredictable harvest due to susceptibility to external factors such as weather, and also higher profitability by selling directly to consumers. Other advantages include the development of closer relationships with consumers and a reduced burden in terms of market activities. CSA is said to have roots in Japan, in the Teikei (Partnership) movement of the 1970s, which focused on building partnerships between producers and consumers. The movement has since spread throughout the world, and currently CSA is especially gaining popularity in the United States and Europe.

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