Proposed features/Farm boxes

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Farm boxes
Status: Rejected (inactive)
Proposed by: SterlingGIS
Tagging: farm_boxes=pickup:source:source_and_pickup
Applies to: node/area
Definition: A place where boxes of fresh produce are created or distributed as part of a community supported agriculture (CSA) program
Drafted on: 2014-02-19
RFC start: 2014-02-19
Vote start: 2014-03-10
Vote end: 2014-12-24


This tag helps represent community supported agriculture programs (CSAs) in OpenStreetMap. In a CSA, a person typically pre-pays a local farm a flat fee for a "share" of the farm, and receives a box of seasonal produce on a regular basis. These boxes are distributed in partnering locations throughout the community so that the person does not have to travel all the way to the farm to pick up the produce. There are many names and variations to this scheme. For example, sometimes you can buy a box on demand without purchasing a share for a full season. However, most involve a box of locally-grown produce that can be retrieved from a particular location.

  • farm_boxes=pickup - A place where you can retrieve or purchase a box of fresh produce from a CSA. These are often known as "pickup points" or "drop sites".
  • farm_boxes=source - A farm that distributes boxes of fresh produce as part of a CSA but does not allow purchase or retrieval of the boxes at the farm itself.
  • farm_boxes=source_and_pickup - A farm that distributes boxes of fresh produce for a CSA and allows people to retrieve their CSA produce box onsite at the farm. If the farm just sells boxes of produce and does not participate in a CSA, use shop=farm instead.

Supporting tags

Many times the tags will be applied on an existing feature, such as building=*, amenity=marketplace, or landuse=farm.

Use name=* to clarify the node's role in the CSA, for example: "Three Forks Farm CSA drop site". Use website=* and description=* to provide further information if necessary. Pickup locations and farms have complex cardinalities (ie, some farms have multiple pickup locations and vice versa). Therefore, a specialized tagging framework is not currently proposed for representing these relationships.

The organic=* organic tag can help specify whether the produce offered in the boxes is organic.

The opening_hours=* tag can help specify when the boxes are available; however, use caution if you are applying this tag to an existing amenity (such as a business) that may have its own opening hours already tagged. You may want to create a separate node for the farm box information.

Rationale for tag name

The tag name farm_boxes was chosen for brevity and generality, although the boxes may not always be called "farm boxes". In the UK they are often called "vegetable boxes".


These pages point to example CSAs in the United States where you can make arrangements to buy farm boxes


Please use {{vote|yes}} or {{vote|no}} and give your reasons to oppose. Use ~~~~ to sign your user name & date.

  • I oppose this proposal I oppose this proposal. From my experience, farm box pick-up locations change too frequently to be maintained accurately on a map. The information we should be maintaining is whether or not a farm is part of a CSA program and what the farm's phone number and/or website address is so that people can find out the current pick-up locations from the farm directly. So I would support something like a csa_program=yes tag that can be applied to a farm, but not tags for the pick-up locations themselves. Kaldari (talk) 06:14, 18 April 2014 (UTC)
  • I approve this proposal I approve this proposal. I have posted some responses to the above opposing vote on the talk page. Basically, mapping CSA pickup locations is a lot more helpful than mapping just farms, because it allows people to make maps of where CSAs are available in their neighborhoods. The farm might be many kilometers outside of town, while the pickup location is right around the corner, making the CSA an option for you. See Philly Fresh Food Map (click the "CSA" button) for an example implementation of this tag. SterlingGIS (talk) 15:12, 2 May 2014 (UTC)
  • I abstain from this proposal. IMO, details about product distribution do not belong in a geo database. If you can go to a farm and order farm boxes, use shop=*, as this is the key for places where you can buy something. Otherwise just don't map it. On the other hand, I am not familiar enough with farm boxes to vote no. --Fkv (talk) 14:38, 11 May 2014 (UTC)
  • I oppose this proposal I oppose this proposal. - --Foxxi59 (talk) 10:48, 13 December 2014 (UTC)
  • I abstain from this proposal. CSA pick-up locations are not places where vegetables are bought, but rather made available for people (members of the scheme) to pick them up, so I don't the shop=* tag is appropriate for this. They are rather distribution points and they are relatively stable over time. That said, in Europe, and especially Germany, they are not really boxes, but places where the produce is delivered on a regular basis, and people come to pick them up. So, while I think a tag is needed for describing this type of spaces (which are essential for people to get information where there is a delivery of food of such scheme, more than the farm itself), I find the name for it misleading/too specific. Gandhiano (talk) 10:54, 19 May 2015 (UTC)