Friday, September 25, 2020

Why Shop and Eat Local?


On my journey to a healthier life for my family and I, I have found that local food not only tastes better but also makes me feel better. Growing up we didn't go to farmers' markets or even really shop from local food producers other than prepared food businesses, like the local bagel shop for example. I have truly grown to love all the benefits eating locally and seasonally offers. This may also have to do with my job outside of this blog being deeply rooted in local food systems. 

The virus has definitely complicated delivery of local food to consumers, but farmers and producers have shown their resilience and continue to do so by offering so many different methods of shopping for their customers (including but not limited to delivery, curbside pick-up, etc.). Another important thing to note is less hands overall have touched the product when you purchase local food compared to food at the grocery store. 

Though it at times may be slightly more expensive depending on where you shop, in my opinion it is definitely worth it! Eating locally is not only good for you but is also beneficial to the environment and your local economy. When you shop from local retailers or food producers, you are putting money back into the pocket of your neighbors. Local fruits and vegetables have traveled shorter lengths between the production site and your plate! Many of the common foods you see on your grocery shelf have travelled weeks, whereas when you purchase food directly from a farmer either from a farm store, CSA, or from a farmers' market the produce has often been picked within the last 48 hours (unless of course they are winter storage vegetables). 

Studies have shown the longer span of time between harvest and consumption leads to a decrease the the vital essential nutrients we gain from our food. Who wouldn't want to get more bang for their buck in regards to health? Am I right? 

Not to say that all local food is healthy, or you need to only shop for food from local food producers, but eating locally in some form or another has so many benefits! I'm sure if you think about it, you probably have a local business you enjoy getting your coffee, sandwiches, etc. What are your favorite places to purchase food that are local to your area? Please share in the comments, I'm so curious! 

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