The International CSA Network

Bringing together citizens, small farmers, consumers, activists and concerned political actors at global level through an alternative economic approach called Local Solidarity-based Partnerships between Producers and Consumers.

It is a way of maintaining and developing small-scale organic family farming and of achieving local food sovereignty for each region and community worldwide.

URGENCI wants to vigorously promote all forms of partnership between producers and local consumers, all kinds of Community Supported Agriculture initiatives, as a solution to the problems associated with global intensive agricultural production and distribution.

Farmers alone have been shouldering the risks of the increasingly ruthless global market, which has forced millions of them from the land. Community-Supported agriculture offers one of the most hopeful alternatives to the downward spiral, and is the only model of farming in which consumers deliberately agree to share the risks and benefits with farmers.

It take many different forms in the various parts of the world, based on the social, historical, geopolitical, agricultural and economic specificities of each country or region where they have developed. The members of URGENCI are however united in their belief in the following 4 fundamental ideas

Partnership: This partnership is characterised by a mutual commitment to supply (by the peasants) and up-take (by the consumers) of the food produced during each season.

Local: this means promoting local exchange. LSPCCs are part of an active approach to relocalising the economy.

Solidarity: partnerships are based on solidarity between actors and involves:

  • Sharing both the risks and the benefits of healthy production that is adapted to the natural rhythm of the seasons and is respectful of the environment, natural and cultural heritage and health.
  • Paying a sufficient fair price up-front to enable peasants and their families to live in a dignified manner.

The producer/consumer tandem: is based on direct person-to-person contact and trust, with no intermediaries or hierarchy and no subordination.

It is the absolute respect and implementation of these four fundamental principles by URGENCI members that forms the basis for more general values.

 

The values of the network

Fairness, Solidarity, Reciprocity, and especially commitment to fair, stable prices and risk-sharing of agricultural production.

Each producer-consumer partnership is independent.

URGENCI aims to develop overall coherence at and between local, regional, national and global levels of projects to emphasize the relevant contribution of Community Supported Agriculture to a sustainable and inclusive world.