Portland Area CSAs
Two critical pieces in making nutrition and lifestyle changes are figuring out what food to buy and figuring out where to get it. This page will help you with answer the question of where to get it.
One clarification before we dive in: Most of the sources I mention involve CSAs... so what is a CSA? Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) involves local farmers selling a share of the harvest before the season starts. Most CSAs require payment up front and in full so that the farmer can buy the equipment and seeds necessary and have a reliable income stream. Then CSA members pickup their share at the farm or at a pickup location in the city at regular intervals through the year. As CSAs have grown in popularity there are now lots of variations of this traditional model. CSAs are my favorite way to encourage folks to buy food for the following reasons:
- CSAs connect us to our farmers and environment. We pray against bad weather so we get all our produce!
- CSAs ensure farmers get 100% of the revenue. This keeps money in the community.
- CSAs encourage us to try new things. I have learned to cook new veggies and new cuts of meat through CSAs.
- CSAs help us to eat more fresh food. When I've got all those radishes and arugula in the fridge, I'm much more likely to eat a salad than tortilla chips.
Here are some of my go-to local food sources:
Buying Produce in Portland
- 47th Ave Farm
- About: Laura Masterson has been running this CSA program for over 20 years - it's one of the first in Portland! I have participated for 5 years and it was my first experience as a CSA member so it holds a special place in my heart - I've gone from thinking "What the heck is celeriac and how am I going to eat all these vegetables??" to considering switching from the Half Share (for 2-3 people) to the Full Share (for a family of 4+). Winter and Summer shares are available to cover the full year.
- Location: Pickups in SE Portland (Woodstock) and Lake Oswego. Farms in Lake Oswego and Grand Island, OR.
- What they sell: Organic, seasonal vegetables
- How they sell: Vegetable Share - pay up front for the full season with weekly pickups in the summer and twice monthly pickups in the winter.
- Food Works
- About: Food Works is a farm run mostly by youth from lower-income neighborhoods in the summertime. Their goal is to give kids an opportunity to learn agricultural skills, earn a little money, and stay busy during the summer. They learn all aspects of growing, harvesting, and selling organic produce, and older children are able to manage the younger ones to gain additional skills. I loved this farm share last summer!
- Location: Pickups in N Portland. Farm on Sauvie Island, OR.
- What they sell: Organic, seasonal vegetables and fruit
- How they sell: Vegetable share - pay up front for the full season with weekly pickups in the summer.
- Love Farm Organics
- About: Love Farm has been an organic CSA for the Portland area since 2006. This is my first season with their CSA and so far I've loved the quality of the produce!
- Location: Pickups around Portland. Farm in Forest Grove, OR.
- What they sell: Organic, seasonal vegetables and fruit
- How they sell: Vegetable share - pay up front for the full season with weekly pickups in the summer. Option to add-on a berry share for extra berries.
Buying meat In Portland
- Heart2Heart Farms
- About: This farm is run by a fellow Nutritional Therapy Practitioner and her husband, Liz and Tyler Boggs, some of the most loving farmers you'll ever meet. They offer an incredible meat CSA program that allows you to pickup only as much meat at a time as you want, which means even folks without freezer space to buy a half cow can get in on local, pasture-raised, appropriately-fed animals from farmers who care deeply about them. Liz & Tyler also pick up truckloads of unsellable produce from grocery stores each week and bring it back to their farm so lower-income families can have access to free produce. They offer work-trade for meat, as well as several other great programs. I love being part of their meat CSA and volunteering regularly on their farm.
- Location: Sherwood, OR
- What they sell: Beef, Pork, Chicken, Eggs, Raw Milk, Rabbit, Quail, Alpaca, Yak, Bones, Organs, Vegetables
- How they sell: Meat - CSA or A la Carte: Pay up front and pickup on site at any frequency in any volume, Vegetables - A la Carte: Purchase at the farm
- Marion Acres Farms
- About: Oddly enough I found Marion Acres through Instagram! They are a couple of friends who wanted to homestead and ended up doing much more. They are a new farm and regularly expanding their offering - I bought a half hog from them last year and it was delicious. I was a newbie at buying a meat share and they were very helpful and accommodating in explaining the process.
- Location: Hillsboro, OR (Helvetia).
- What they sell: Chicken, Turkey, Beef, Pork, Eggs, Grass-fed Milk, Bones, Broth
- How they sell: Half / Whole Hogs and Cows, everything else through Buying Clubs with pickup locations around the city.
Buying Fish in Portland
I am just getting started buying fish shares, and hope to have more options available for you soon!
- Iliamna Fish Company
- About: This family business has been salmon fishing in Alaska since the 1940s and has grown tremendously while continuing sustainable, wild-caught fishing practices. This is my first year with a share, but last year my parents participated and shared some amazing salmon with me. Salmon is sushi grade!
- Location: Fishing is in Bristol Bay, AK and pick-up sites are all over the cities of Portland, Eugene, and Corvallis, OR.
- What they sell: Wild-Caught Salmon Filets
- How they sell: Buy a share (~20 lbs) in the spring and pickup in the fall at one of the drop sites
Farms I want to try!
These are farms that I have friends who have purchased from and vouched for, but I have not yet had a chance to try myself. Do you have other great local sources? Let me know and I'll add it to my list!
- Kookoolan Farms
- Location: Yamhill, OR
- What they sell: Meat, Poultry, Mead, Kombucha
- How they sell: Meat by the share on 1-2 month lead time, everything else on site at the farm
- Botany Bay Farm
- Location: Brush Prairie, WA
- What they sell: Chicken, Pork, Rabbit, Beef, Eggs
- How they sell: On site at the farm, Reserve Online, chicken at New Seasons and Chuck's Produce