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Why buying local makes sense

Posted by on Apr. 28, 2012 at 9:36 PM
  • 19 Replies

Why Buy Local?

Most produce in the US is picked 4 to 7 days before being placed on supermarket shelves, and is shipped for an average of 1500 miles before being sold. And this is when taking into account only US grown products! Those distances are substantially longer when we take into consideration produce imported from Mexico, Asia, Canada, South America, and other places.

We can only afford to do this now because of the artificially low energy prices that we currently enjoy, and by externalizing the environmental costs of such a wasteful food system. We do this also to the detriment of small farmers by subsidizing large scale, agribusiness-oriented agriculture with government handouts and artificially cheap energy.

Cheap oil will not last forever though. World oil production has already peaked, according to some estimates, and while demand for energy continues to grow, supply will soon start dwindling, sending the price of energy through the roof. We'll be forced then to reevaluate our food systems and place more emphasis on energy efficient agricultural methods, like smaller-scale organic agriculture, and on local production wherever possible.

Cheap energy and agricultural subsidies facilitate a type of agriculture that is destroying and polluting our soils and water, weakening our communities, and concentrating wealth and power into a few hands. It is also threatening the security of our food systems, as demonstrated by the continued e-Coli, GMO-contamination, and other health scares that are often seen nowadays on the news.

These large-scale, agribusiness-oriented food systems are bound to fail on the long term, sunk by their own unsustainability. But why wait until we're forced by circumstance to abandon our destructive patterns of consumption? We can start now by buying locally grown food whenever possible. By doing so you'll be helping preserve the environment, and you'll be strengthening your community by investing your food dollar close to home. Only 18 cents of every dollar, when buying at a large supermarket, go to the grower. 82 cents go to various unnecessary middlemen. Cut them out of the picture and buy your food directly from your local farmer.




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by on Apr. 28, 2012 at 9:36 PM
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Replies (1-10):
mypbandj
by Jen on Apr. 28, 2012 at 11:03 PM
1 mom liked this

Speaking of buying local - here is a pic of my kids at the farmers market today. :D
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
e-doolittle
by Kelly on Apr. 29, 2012 at 1:18 AM
Wish it was easier to buy local.
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reneawesley
by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 9:47 AM
Me too.

Quoting e-doolittle:

Wish it was easier to buy local.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
cleanaturalady
by on Apr. 29, 2012 at 3:32 PM

I love to buy local when I can.  We don't have a great farmers market very close, though, so it's hard. 

darbyakeep45
by Darby on Apr. 29, 2012 at 6:14 PM

We have some great farmer's markets here...shop there all the time!

mp3mom
by on Apr. 30, 2012 at 11:44 AM

My parents have a small garden; I go to the market when I can. And there's nothin' like a Jersey tomato!

Krysden
by Platinum Member on Apr. 30, 2012 at 3:01 PM

I'm hoping my garden does well this year.... doesn't get much more local that that! (=

cleanaturalady
by on Apr. 30, 2012 at 9:36 PM


Quoting Krysden:

I'm hoping my garden does well this year.... doesn't get much more local that that! (=

Oh!  What did you plant?  

  

Krysden
by Platinum Member on May. 4, 2012 at 11:09 AM
1 mom liked this


Quoting cleanaturalady:

Quoting Krysden:

I'm hoping my garden does well this year.... doesn't get much more local that that! (=

Oh!  What did you plant?  

Sorry, I almost forgot to respond!   (=    I planted tomatoes, strawberries, cucumbers, green bell peppers, cayenne peppers, potatoes, & a cabbage plant.   I'm in a garden war with the chickens though.   I had to replant several of the peppers and lost some tomato plants & all but one cucumber plant!  Those crazy chickens just can't resist getting in there and scratching around for bugs, worms, & dust baths! 

cleanaturalady
by on May. 4, 2012 at 9:00 PM


Quoting Krysden:


Quoting cleanaturalady:

Quoting Krysden:

I'm hoping my garden does well this year.... doesn't get much more local that that! (=

Oh!  What did you plant?  

Sorry, I almost forgot to respond!   (=    I planted tomatoes, strawberries, cucumbers, green bell peppers, cayenne peppers, potatoes, & a cabbage plant.   I'm in a garden war with the chickens though.   I had to replant several of the peppers and lost some tomato plants & all but one cucumber plant!  Those crazy chickens just can't resist getting in there and scratching around for bugs, worms, & dust baths! 

What part of the country do you live in?

  

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