FairShare works closely with our community of growers to develop and share resources, build skills and farm efficiencies and to maintain a spirit of collaboration and camaraderie. FairShare endorses new farms each year through an application and interview process and throughout the year sponsors Grower Gatherings, Mentorship Programs, Technical Workshops and Field Days for FairShare endorsed farms and other direct market producers. FairShare’s grower resource library contains hundreds of articles, books, audio recordings and other publications related to direct market production and is available for lending or in-office reading by our community of growers.
Each fall FairShare accepts applications from farms interested in being formally endorsed for the following growing season. Farmers must submit a full application and have an in-person interview conducted by currently endorsed farmers. To be considered as a FairShare endorsed farm your farm must grow or produce the vast majority of your products on farm, be certified organic or in transition to organic certification and demonstrate an ability to provide a high level of customer service. If you are interested in joining FairShare, feel free to review the application materials listed below to gain an understanding of our policies, requirements, and the information we ask for in the application. Application materials for 2013 are due November 1st, 2012. Please read ALL of the documents before completing your application.
- New Grower Letter
- Benefits and Responsibilities
- Organic Policy
- Criteria for Evaluating Applicant Farms
- 2013 New Grower Application (DOC)
- 2013 New Grower Application (PDF)
If you are a FairShare farm, whether you are new or returning, you will find this manual useful! It contains information about FairShare history, policies, managing your information on the FairShare website, and opportunities to share and connect with other farms.
Join the FairShare Farm Network that shares information on techniques and equipment and encourages dialogue to improve the production and marketing of CSA in the Midwest.
To join this listserve, contact email@example.com.
FairShare Field Days occur in the summer and fall and are opportunities to visit local farms while they are in production. Field Days are free and open to the public. They take place on local farms and are led by farmers, sometimes in conjunction with Extension staff.
Workshops are single-topic, intensive programs offering attendees several hours of hands-on experience. Attendance is typically capped at 15-25 to ensure that all attendees are able to ask questions and engage with the presenters and topic material. For topics directly related to farm production, the workshop will tend to take place on a farm. During the 2010-11 workshop season, the Coalition organized sessions on Fruit Tree Grafting, Quickbooks for CSA Growers, Crop Planning, Early Season Hoophouse Production, Mechanical Cultivation, and Building a Low-Cost Packshed & Cooler.
These semi-formal gatherings sessions are typically held as a potluck during the winter and are open to anyone who would like to attend. Farmers, consultants, faculty, and extension staff come together to share ideas, experiences, and suggestions for a particular topic, such as labor management, pest control, irrigation systems, or cover crops.
These training sessions are limited to 5 farmers who are members of FairShare. They take place during the winter and are designed to allow farmers and other experts to convey detailed information in a small group setting. Participants can expect to discuss their specific farm situation with the instructors.