UPDATE (May 13): Tiffany was mentioned in the Sentinel-Tribune while at the opening of the new Farmer’s Market in Bowling Green…“Dixon who arrived on her bicycle with her young daughter in a covered trailer sheltered from the elements, said she plans on returning next week to make some purchases.” Click Here for online article in full
Spring is here and summer is just around the corner. Flowers are in bloom. Gardens are being planted. Soon fresh local produce will be all around us. Recently we have all heard a lot about eating organic or local. Here are ten reasons that I have come across and agree with as reason to buy and eat local produce.
1. Local produce taste better.
When fruits and vegetables are able to ripen on the the vine, bush or tree, they are able to reach their fullest flavor!
2. Local produce is more nutritious.
Fruits and vegetables reach a nutritional peak if they are picked when ripe instead of early for shipping. “Most produce in the US is pick 4-7 days before it gets to supermarket shelves and travels an average of 1500 miles before being sold.” (http://www.localharvest.org/buylocal.jsp)
3. Buying local produce is better for the local economy.
This is a simple concept. If you spend your money locally, it keeps your money local and supports the business close to home. It is estimated that only $.18 on the dollar goes to the grower. That means that $.82 is going to the middleman.
4. Buying local is better for the environment.
If your food doesn’t have to travel, then it doesn’t use all that gas to get to you. Oh yeah, and you can ride you bike to go buy it so you’re not using gas either.
5. Buying locally builds community.
You get to know your farmer and others in business in your community. If you have any type of local business, this can be a chance for your to network.
6. Local produce supports diversity and many more variety.
Only the hearty varieties of fruits and vegetables are grown for the supermarkets. They have to be able to withstand the long journey to the shelves.
7. Buying local produce give you an opportunity to learn.
Do you want to know how you food was grown? Were organic methods used? Were pesticides used? Well, just ask. Your grower is standing right there. I have found that local growers enjoy what they do and are happy to talk about it. I love an opportunity to learn!
8. Buying local supports responsible land development.
If local land is being successfully used for growing local produce, it will keep the space open for agriculture.
9. Buying local is about the future.
By keeping local growers in business it ensures that your children and grandchildren will have access to locally grown produce and the whole process surrounding it.
10. Buying local can be fun!
Think about it wouldn’t you rather walk from table to table, be outside, enjoy the seasons rather than rush through the supermarket all year long. So take the kids or a friend, set aside some time and enjoy the process of shopping!
With all of this said if you live in Bowling Green then today is the first day of your local Farmers’ Market. It is at a new location, time and being organized by a different a group this year. It is being held downtown from 3-8pm between the 165 and 181 South Main St (the parking lot right next to SamB’s). I think it is a great concept to have it downtown because not only will the local farmers be there but we will be close to all the other local businesses like Grounds for Thought and their locally roasted coffee.
Here are two websites with more information:
If you want to learn more about local eating, you must listen to this Michael Pollan Interview (15 mins) Click Here (requires iTunes)