Buying locally is the simple concept of buying food tht is produced, grown, or raised as close to your home as possible.
The advantages are incredible (and edible):
- Local farmers can offer produce varieties bred for taste and freshness rather than for shipping and long shelf life. (Taste and freshness? What a concept!)
- Family farms are part of the American tradition of self-sufficiency and should serve as the basis of all local communities. No brainer: When you buy food from a local farm, your money stays in, and helps support your local community.
- When you buy food locally you reduce energy consumption. Local food doesn't have to travel far. Food, on average, travels 1500-2500 miles from farm to table. Buying locally helps to lower energy consumption by reducing transportation and storage, both of which are very energy-intensive and contribute to the pollution of our air and water.
- Certified Farmers' Markets are instrumental in preserving the diversity of California agriculture by providing marketing outlets for the small acreage growers of heirloom, culinary, ethnic, and specialty crops not widely grown on a large scale or found at traditional food sources.
The two best ways to buy locally (and support local farms) is to shop at your local Farmers Market and join the CSA Communitiy Supported Agriculture) movement.