Why buy local?
What is local food? Well, the most local you can get is the food you grow for yourself in your back garden. The least local is food flown thousands of miles to a supermarket. In between are a range of other options which are open to all of us. In West Cornwall we are blessed with many farms and smallholdings. If you live in the country you can buy at the farm gate or from hedge supermarkets - those roadside stalls with honesty boxes. Your neighbours may sell eggs or honey. If you live in the town, then there are Farmers Markets, roadside stalls and local shops.
You know that you have bought locally when you can find out who produced your food.
Local food will also be seasonal food. Global food distribution has meant that we can buy almost any food at any time of the year. Whilst this has given us far greater choice in the food we eat, the cost of this has been great:
- vegetables are picked before they are ripe
- varieties are chosen for long shelf life and
- transportation instead of taste
- food is overpackaged and treated
.....and at what cost to the environment?
The sad thing is that when our own local food is in season, we still go to the supermarket and buy long distance food out of habit.
We hope that this guide will help you in your quest to buy and eat local food. Once you have tasted local food you will find it hard to eat anything else.
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