CSA Farmers Strut Their Stuff 

Farmers gathered in Augusta Friday to show off their products. They also wanted to give people an idea of how easy it is to get fresh organic produce to their dinner tables.Local farmers were the ones on on display at the Viles Arboretum in Augusta. Mark Desmeules is the Executive Director at the Viles Arboretum, and one of the organizers of the CSA Farmers Fair. He says this type of fair provides an outlet for farmers to show off a bit for potential customers. “This is one of many opportunities where we have a chance to showcase our local farmers and local produce for the people in the area,” Desmeules said. People who dropped by got to learn about what Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is all about and how it works. CSA farms allow people to pay for their produce in advance, as it’s planted. Once everything is harvested, you can have fresh, local, organic produce year round. “They sign up in the spring. We use those funds to start our farming and our seed starting cost. Then they come each week knowing their share has already been paid for,” said Mary Perry, owner of Winterbury Farm in Belgrade.Winterbury Farm is a CSA farm growing food for 75 local families. “We show you how to can, and freeze, and naturally ferment your cabbage, and kim chi. it’s great stuff,” Perry said.Farmers, like Robin Wiesner of 3 Level Farm in South China, say it’s networking like this that’s important. Being able to let people know there are better options out there. “It’s great,” Wiesner says, “one of the most important things is to get to meet the people in the community, because that’s the people who we’re hoping to reach out to get support from.”All this outreach seems to be working…farmers tell me the concept of CSA farms has really taken off. “It does seem that way,” Wiesner says, “it’s great. “It’s good to see that more and more people are wanting to be getting local food and it’s great to see that farms are being able to be supported by their really close community.”To learn more about a CSA farm in your area, you can go to the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners website: