Want better tasting, safer and more eco-friendly foods? Eat local!
Eating locally-produced food is better for the environment, your health and even your taste buds. Here are seven big reasons why you should start eating more local foods.
- Local Foods Boost Community
Eating local foods connects you with food sources in your community, like the vendors at the farmers’ market, the local cafe with great coffee and the co-op that has the best local eggs. Connecting with the people who grew and raised these goods fosters a greater sense of community.
- Local Foods are Fresh
Which would you rather eat – tomatoes picked last week, washed in a factory and sealed in a plastic tub, or those plucked from the earth yesterday? You can taste the difference between foods grown locally and those flown or trucked in from thousands of miles away.
- Eating Local Foods Promotes Variety
Supermarkets are stocked with “name brand” produce, like russet potatoes, romaine lettuce and granny smith apples. Local producers are more free to experiment with smaller crops of different varieties, like Senshu apples, little gem lettuce and chieftain potatoes.
- Local Foods are Seasonal.
Fresh strawberries taste best in season, and they become a special treat when you haven’t had them for a few months. When you eat locally, you will enjoy the freshest and tastiest apricots in early summer, broccoli in winter and asparagus in the fall. These foods are at their peak taste and are least expensive when eaten in season.
- Local Foods Support the Local Economy
Instead of sending your money to a huge corporation in another state or country, grow your local economy by eating locally. When you eat local foods, your money stays closer to home and supports local growers, artisans and farmers. Eating locally is a great way to make a significant local economic impact.
- Local Foods are Better for the Environment
Shipping foods thousands of miles creates a huge carbon footprint for something as small as a bunch of grapes or handful of herbs. If you are buying organic produce from a supermarket, the miles it traveled to get to your plate often creates environmental damages that are greater than the benefit of buying organic. To reduce your impact on the environment, shop with local farmers who use sustainable and organic growing practices.
- Local Foods May Be Safer
When the distance grows between your plate and your food’s source, so do the odds of the food possibly being contaminated. Food grown thousands of miles away has a higher potential for safety issues due to the harvesting, shipping, washing and distribution processes.