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CSA programs offer meal and box-type programs locally. (Credit: Vera Chinese)

It’s February, which means we are at the point in the year where we’re furthest away from the taste of juicy, ripe heirloom tomatoes and fresh-off-the-grill corn.

But now is the perfect time to support the farmers who bring us our delicious produce as they prepare for the 2017 growing season. 

Community supported agriculture programs help farmers meet the costs of ordering seeds and planting before seasonal revenue begins coming in.

“With farming, you have to really put all your money upfront to get started,” said Lucy Senesac, farm manager at Sang Lee Farms in Peconic.

For those who don’t know, community supported agriculture allows participants to subscribe to a season’s worth of a farm’s offerings. Farmers receive an upfront investment and members, in turn, receive a box of fresh in-season produce every week.

Not only do CSA members get a discount on produce, they show farmers that community members are committed to their work. The programs also encourage participants to try fruits and vegetables they might not have tasted before.

“I have so many people who are like, ‘Korean moo? I never knew this existed and now I love it,’” Senesac said.

Late February is the most popular time of year to join a CSA program, according to Small Farm Central. The organization, which provides tech support services to small farms, coined CSA Day in 2015. The annual celebration falls on the last Friday of February, which this year is Feb. 24.

Sign up on Friday and use #CSADay on social media to spread the word.

Here is a list of local farms offering a CSA program:

Biophilia Organic Farm
211 Manor Lane, Jamesport
(516) 769-97328

Browder’s Birds
4050 Soundview Avenue, Mattituck
(631) 477-6523 or (631) 599-394

Full share (20 weeks) $655
Half share (10 weeks) $330
Shares available now, first pickup is June 3

Golden Egg
Egg share (20 dozen total) $200
Starts June 3

Condzellas Farm
6233 North Country Road, Wading River
(631) 929-5058

Deep Roots Farm
(631) 745-7928

Garden of Eve
4558 Sound Avenue, Riverhead
(631) 722-8777

Golden Earthworm Organic Farm
652 Peconic Bay Boulevard, Jamesport
(631) 722-3302

2017 pricing for 25 weeks of produce

Long Island Pick-Up Sites

Jamesport (Farm) Pickup Site
$550 ($22.00/week)

Invincible Summer Farms
3005 Young’s Avenue, Southold
[email protected]

KK’s The Farm
59945 Main Road, Southold
(631) 765-2075

MarGene Farms
2230 Soundview Avenue, Mattituck
(631) 298-7688

Natural Earth Farms
2806 River Road, Calverton
(631) 804-3036

2017 shares signup is now open
$500 if picking up in Calverton, Manorville or Rocky Point

$550 if picking up in Babylon, Sayville, Patchogue or Rockville Centre

Sang Lee Farms
25180 County Road 48, Peconic
(631) 734-7001

Signup for the 25-week program has begun
$640 (or $25.60 a week)
$600 if picking up at farm

Starts May 30 and 31 and ends Nov. 15 and 16

Pick-up locations include Sang Lee Farms, Westhampton Beach Market, Northport Farmers Market, East Hampton Farmers market, Merrick Jewish Center and Farm to Table Catering in Smithtown. There is also a wish list for a Southampton site.

Sylvester Manor Educational Farm
21 Manwaring Road, Shelter Island
(631) 749-0626
Those interested in the CSA program can fill out an inquiry here.

Editor’s note: After this story was published, representatives from Sep’s Farm in East Marion contacted northforker to let us know they will offer a CSA this season

Sep’s Farm
7395 Main Rd, East Marion, NY 11939
(631) 477-1583
$300/$15 per week (half) or $500/$25 per week (full) for 20 weeks.