Lion's Mane CSA announcement!
by Morgan DuFord
We are so excited to be doing our first trial run of a community support harvest of Lion's Mane mushrooms for November 2021.
What is a CSA?
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a direct consumer-farmer relationship that involves a mutually beneficial, shared risk approach to agriculture. Traditional agriculture involves a fair amount of upfront costs with a future sale that may not occur. With a CSA, consumers commit to pre-purchasing a share of the future harvest upfront to help with farmer cashflow, while the farmer commits to giving a share of the harvest, however bountiful it may be.
Tell me more about your CSA.
We have Lion's Mane blocks currently incubating, and once they are ready to move to the fruiting chamber, we will open up sales of CSA shares on our online store, and once the shares are sold we will move the blocks into the fruiting chamber with harvest expected 3-4 weeks.
For this first run, we will put 20 blocks into incubation and sell CSA shares for the yield off 12 blocks (60% pre-sold). The 8 blocks are reserved in case any blocks fail to produce. When we calculate the share of the harvest, this buffer permits us to exclude non-producing blocks from the calculation, before we average the harvest shares.
Our CSA is priced for the first harvest (flush) off each block as that is the largest and most consistent harvest. Second and third flushes are not always guaranteed and are far more inconsistent, so those have been excluded. Any successful second or third flushes will be available for purchase, or processed into our shelf stable products if unsold.
What happens with the unsold shares?
If we have more than 12 producing blocks, then we will have additional product available for sale. Any unsold product will be processed into our shelf stable food products like Lion's Mane Salt, Candies, etc.
How much do I get for my CSA share?
The short answer to this is we don't know. The first flush of Lion's Mane ranges between 250g - 450g per block. When we harvest, we will average across the harvested blocks to ensure all of the CSA shares get the same consistent share of the harvest. But we won't actually know what each CSA share receives until we harvest. This is where the shared risk comes in. Neither side truly knows how much we will produce. We can make estimates and assumptions based on our experience.
How much will one CSA share cost?
One CSA share will cost $35, and will include free delivery, or a pick-up location anywhere within our delivery location for out of town customers. Our current delivery area is Airdrie, Cochrane, Chestermere and Calgary itself. AS we are based in NW Calgary, we are not currently able to offer delivery to Okotoks or other out of town areas south of Calgary.
CSA shares are non-refundable, but they are transferrable.