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67 Merchants Row
Rutland, VT, 05701
United States

(802) 417-1528

Rutland Area Farm and Food Link (RAFFL) promotes local food knowledge, production and market opportunities for farmers and community members throughout our region.

What's Growin' On

An online community of farmers in the Rutland region hosted by the Rutland Area Farm and Food Link

The CSA Benchmark Project: How Well Is My Operation REALLY Doing?

Kristin Smith

With benchmarking, it’s as if farmers can peer into the financial results of many CSA farms in order to understand how their business financial performance compares to others. That data will help CSA farmers identify where they can improve business practices to increase profitability. Watch recorded webinar.


Farm Credit East, part of the nationwide Farm Credit System of lending cooperatives, has made loans to many farms that use a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) model.  Generally CSAs work by collecting up-front capital from consumers before the planting season, which buys them a weekly portion of the farm’s bounty during the growing months. The basic CSA business model is now a widespread direct-to-consumer marketing strategy.

But how is a farmer to know if their operation’s financial performance is adequate, or find out how they can improve their profitability? As part of their strategy to serve the needs of their farmer-members, Farm Credit East has aggregated and analyzed the data from a sample of their CSA borrowers, and has established some preliminary financial benchmarks and performance standards.

This webinar illustrates what you need to measure (the key evaluation factors),  what expectations can be set from comparison to best practices (benchmarking), and what management strategies can help move financial performance to a higher level (implementation of leading edge practices).

VIEW THE RECORDED WEBINAR OR CHECK OUT THE SLIDES HERE.