Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), often referred to simply as “organic food baskets,” is a concept which links consumers to local organic farms.


With Community Supported Agriculture, you become a farm member for the season by pre-purchasing a share of the season’s harvest. Participating vegetable farms deliver baskets of fresh produce to a drop-off point in your neighbourhood or at your workplace each week. CSA projects have an important social dimension, since they allow you to get to know your family farmer by lending a hand on the farm or just dropping by for a visit.

CSA provides a real boost to small-scale farming in Quebec. By purchasing a share of the farm’s harvest at the beginning of the season, you allow us to plan our season with a measure of financial security; in return, you get to enjoy our delicious, fresh, nutritious produce throughout the season. CSA also ensures that we receive the full price paid for our produce, further encouraging sound, sustainable farming practices.

CSA encourages local organic food production which promotes, among other things, human health and environmental protection. By participating in CSA, you can eat organic food at an affordable price.

All Things Organic


What is an organic farm?

An organic farm practices a form agriculture that is respectful of the environment. We enrich our soils with compost and green manure.  We also perform crop rotation to counter the effects of pests and disease. Needless to say, we do not use synthetic fertilisers or pesticides, nor do we use GMO seeds. Organic farming is predicated on a fundamental respect of nature, while benefiting from scientific advances and an increasingly sophisticated understanding of soil chemistry.

What is organic food?

In everyday life, we use the term ‘organic’ to describe food produced without synthetic pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, or GMOs (genetically modified organisms).  In addition, though, in North Amercia and Europe, only certified organic food may be sold as such.

How does a farmer obtain an organic certification?

To become organically certified, a farmer must:

  • Study the standards to be met by the farm with respect to all aspects of its operations, i.e. buildings, water supply, soils, farm equipment, sanitary processes, seeds and other inputs, cultural, harvesting and warehousing methods, transportation and distribution – the checklist is long.
  • Apply, by filling out several pages of forms on the farm history, its actual and projected use, with details on the fields, planned crops, crop rotations, fertilisation methods, irrigation, pest control, harvesting and warehousing methods, etc.  An updated plan must be submitted yearly.
  • Undergo inspection, which takes the shape of a farm visit and on-site interview.  Typically, the inspector is an independent agent who is not an employee of the certifying body.  Inspections are yearly – there can also be surprise inspections.

The farmer must maintain records of all activities related to operations, sales & marketing and administration, such as dates and details of soil preparation, crop monitoring, compost application, etc).  All inputs must be documented.  Partner information must be in order.  All documentation must be up-to-date and available for inspection at any time.

At Arlington Gardens, our vegetable and fruit production is certified by the organic certification agency EcoCert Canada. Please see our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for additional information about our organic baskets.