Taking a cue from Community Supported Agriculture programs, fishing groups in the Northeast are letting consumers buy shares in exchange for weekly allotments of local, fresh catch.
"Over the past 20 years, Community Supported Agriculture -- programs in which consumers buy shares in a local farm to receive shipments of fresh produce -- has proven popular, with about 12,500 farms across the country offering farm-to-home services today. Now, the CSA model has made the evolutionary leap from land to sea. Nearly 1,000 Boston-area residents this month will receive their first batch of wild-caught fish through the Gloucester-based Cape Ann Fresh Catch Community Supported Fishery program.
Shares in the Cape Ann CSF run $360 for 8-12 pounds of fish per week and $180 for 4-6 pounds per week -- roughly $3 per pound. The program is a collaboration between the Gloucester Fishermen's Wives Association, MIT Sea Grant and the Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance, and is the first of its kind in Massachusetts. Organizers were hoping to attract 50 members when they announced the CSF this spring. Instead, they have signed up 750 people at eight different pick-up locations, and have an additional 500 people on the waiting list."