Monday, January 29, 2007

Locavores

I stumbled across this movement quite accidentally, but I like the idea they propose and think it could go a few steps further.

They are called Locavores, and they started their movement in San Francisco. Their goal is to only eat food grown or harvested within a 100 mile radius of where they live. Here's a little blurb from their website:

Why Eat Locally?

Our food now travels an average of 1,500 miles before ending up on our plates. This globalization of the food supply has serious consequences for the environment, our health, our communities and our tastebuds. Much of the food grown in the breadbasket surrounding us must be shipped across the country to distribution centers before it makes its way back to our supermarket shelves. Because uncounted costs of this long distance journey (air pollution and global warming, the ecological costs of large scale monoculture, the loss of family farms and local community dollars) are not paid for at the checkout counter, many of us do not think about them at all.


I think this is a pretty interesting idea, but I think it could go one step further. In addition to supporting this on a culinary level, this incentive could also be applied to just about all purchases. The Mom and Pop, Independent Business Owner model as we know it is vanishing at a surprisingly rapid rate. This is caused on so many levels. Things like Wal-Mart (and other large chains), the internet, mail order companies, all take their toll.


I know most of us don't give it much thought, but local businesses really help our local economy. Unlike the big chains, profits generally stay in the city limits. Most small business owners also use other small businesses for their needs (local accountants, insurance brokers, computer consultants, attorneys, printing, advertising, hardware, supplies, etc...) as opposed to that big box corporation that sends all the profits to the corporate office in another state and outsources projects to the cheapest bidder, no matter where that bidder might be (out of state or even out of country). I know this isn't always the case, and I'm sure someone can cite billions of examples of this being erroneous, well then they can start their own blog and cite all the references they want to. This is my soapbox and I'm quite comfy up here for the time being.


Sure you can't get everything locally (I don't see much fresh seafood coming out of the Trinity river), but if you have a choice... every now and then try someone local. Who knows, you just might be surprised. Sure the prices might be a bit more, but the service before and, more importantly, after the sale just might make it worth your while.

1 comment:

Bernie said...

That is so awesome! Too bad there isn't more produce grown around here, I'd totally be a locavore.