I’ve decided to “eat local” for one week. I’m still working out the details, such as….what’s local? I think 100 miles from my home sounds about right. Can I use anything currently in my pantry? I think so. And what sort of timing? I think the next few weeks would be my best bet; if my planned week fell during a time that blueberries, tomatoes & corn were all in season I’d eat well. Are you wondering why eating local matters? There are actually a lot of important reasons.
Sustainability – small scale local farms tend to focus on practices such as little or no pesticide use, crop rotation and other tactics to keep the soil healthy. And it’s not hard to figure out how it benefits the environment if you buy a head of lettuce from a farm 10 miles away, rather than one that was trucked 3000 miles from California.
Preserving open space – pretty simple, if a local farmer can’t make a go of it, he is likely to sell his land to developers. Do we really need another condo complex?
Biodiversity – this might be too big a topic for my little blog. I say either google it or tell me you want to know more.
If this topic intrigues you I highly recommend you read “The Omnivore’s Dilemma” by Michael Pollen. Yeah, I know you’re busy, but it’s important, and could possibly change your life. If you live in Rhode Island or nearby Massachusetts, a great resource is the website Farm Fresh Rhode Island. It’s an easy way to search out farm stands, CSAs, farmers markets and all things locavore.
This is a place I plan to try very soon: Blackbird Farm, grass-fed meats, raised right here in northern RI.