When it comes to actions we can adopt to reduce our carbon footprint, one frequently used call to action is BUY LOCAL, because it reduces the need for transport and supports local communities. Buying locally grown produce is especially effective. Why? It’s pretty simple, you’re doing something good for yourself, local farmers, and the planet. Here are five quick reasons why we love buying local produce:
1. It’s healthier and fresher
It’s no secret that buying locally grown foods drastically reduces the time the food spends from the farm to your plate. Produce purchased from supermarkets has often been in transit or cool rooms for days and even weeks, whereas locally grown food is generally picked within 24 hours of your purchase. Meaning, buying local is good for your health considering the produce is fresher, riper, and tastier!
2. It’s better for the planet
According to the Carbon Brief, our current diets and agricultural practices account for approximately 23% of greenhouse gas emissions. On top of this concerning figure, 70% of fresh water is used for agriculture. Clearly, our current diets and agricultural practices are not sustainable. One way to help reduce your carbon footprint is to buy locally grown food, considering it helps support energy efficient small-scale agricultural practices.
3. It helps support local farmers
Buying local produce helps support local farmers and economically benefits local communities. One way to support local farmers is to purchase your produce through the community-supported agriculture (CSA) model, which creates a direct and mutually beneficial relationship between the farmer and consumers. By investing in a farmer's upcoming crop, the consumer commits to sharing both the abundance and the risk of the harvest. It’s a great way to truly support your local farmer and, being subscribers ourselves, we couldn’t recommend it enough! You can find your local CSA here.
4. It produces less waste
Considering purchasing local produce means the food travels more directly from farm to fork, by shortening the distribution chain it helps to also significantly reduce the amount of waste generated throughout the process. Not only does this mean less packaging waste is necessary, but it also means less environmental waste from pollution is generated. More often than not, when you purchase produce from your local CSA or farmers market, your delicious fruits and vegetables are packaged in little to no waste. It’s a win win!
5. It supports seasonal produce
Buying local produce and eating seasonally truly go hand in hand. When you buy local, the produce you’re buying has been grown for the current season, in comparison to buying something from the supermarket that’s been imported and is often more expensive. Not only is this good for you by ensuring you’re eating the freshest and tastiest possible produce, but it’s also good for our planet - by reducing how far the produce has had to travel.