8 Reasons to Support Local Food Producers

Posted by Bamboo Village on 28th Sep 2015

When you think about where your food comes from, do you imagine countries or cities hundreds of miles away, or the farm down the road? Our food can travel an average of 1500 miles from growth to the consumer in this country; this means a higher carbon footprint, less fresh food, and little economic support for local farmers and food growers. If you're conscious of being 'green' and eco-friendly, consider buying as much as you can from local sources. There are many advantages to doing so:

Support Local Farmers - It goes without saying, that when you buy local, you're supporting the local farmers who have grown and produced the fruit and vegetables you have bought. It keeps their businesses thriving, is usually cheaper for you, and creates local jobs at their farms too which supports the local economy. That's many benefits in one!

Community Support - Buying at places such as your local greengrocer or farmers market, really creates and sustains local community support. Buying local encourages a connected community by getting to know the farmers and other people who regularly stop by to purchase local foods. Farmers markets are great places to meet new people and really get to know your neighbours.

Preserving Space - When you buy local, you're enabling the farms to thrive and survive as a business. This means their land can stay as farm land, preventing land from being redeveloped into big shopping centres or complexes.

Save the Travel - Food that is produced locally travels much less distance to market than food at supermarkets (where food can come from other countries). This uses less fuel, and consequently generates less greenhouse gases which is fantastic for the environment. It also saves money on fuel for you.

Attract Tourism - Farmers markets and locally grown food promotes tourism; people like the chance to visit local farmers and local food producers. Tourism and new visitors to a region means more money being spent in the local economy, which supports local overall.

Fresh Food - Local food does not have preservatives on it to maintain its life, and it does not have a long journey from transit to someone’s plate either. This means the food loses fewer nutrients and doesn't spoil, meaning it is much fresher for you to enjoy. This equals better taste, which is what everyone wants.

New Discoveries - There are hundreds of different fruits and vegetables to be enjoyed, and buying locally gives you a great chance to discover new foods you might not have known about had you only bought from the supermarket. Farmers and local suppliers can also teach you new ways to prepare food, especially when new foods come into season.

Less Waste - When you support local food, there are shorter distribution chains for food, and therefore less food is wasted on warehouses, merchandising and distribution. Generally less food is wasted too; supermarkets can throw hundreds of items away in any given day, but it is very rare to see items left over at the end of a farmers market.

Do you support local? What are your favourite finds?