You may have heard that it's great to eat local. This may mean joining a CSA like the food that I feature each week, or it might mean shopping at your local farmer's market. Some grocery stores even sell local food at certain seasons. The question remains, however, why?
2. Taste. The taste of local food is much better because rather than picking the produce weeks before shipping, the fruits and vegetables are allowed to ripen on the vine. The taste difference is absolutely amazing.
3. Nutritional Value. Over time nutritional value is depleted, but if you purchase a product that was harvested within 24 hours, as most local produce is, the nutritional value has not had a chance to be depleted.
4. Environmental Impact. Driving produce across the country (or even further) takes fuel, and burning fuel is detrimental to the environment. For even better environmental impact, purchase local organic food. Pesticides are petroleum based, and in addition, they can cause many problems to local ecosystems when used.
5. Encourage Your Area to Keep Undeveloped Land. Farm space and undeveloped land is great for soil health, and it reduces the amount of harmful runoff polluting streams. By supporting local farms, you keep these vital areas undeveloped.
6. Eat More Variety. Retailers often demand identical products to be sold across the country, and therefor, large-scale farms often grow standard varieties of many vegetables. When eating locally, you can try many different varieties of produce that cannot be found in large chain stores.
7. Stay in Tune with Nature. When we buy foods that are in season, it costs less, and the taste is far superior.
8. Teach Your Kids Where Their Food Comes From. When you can take your kids to the farm to compost tomato plants or pick apples, they get a better idea about where their food comes from. Kids who have a hand in growing their food, are more likely to try and eat a more diverse array of foods.
For more information, check out these other great sites about eating local:
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