We all know that fresh fruits and vegetables are a crucial part of a healthy diet. They pack a wallop of nutrients, vitamins, antioxidants and fiber, and when compared to their canned or frozen counterparts, the taste simply can't be beat. Local farmer’s markets have sprung up everywhere, and many people are enjoying the benefits associated with being able to drive a few miles to pick up fresh produce and other products.
Why buy local food?
- Locally grown food tastes and looks better. The crops are picked at their peak, and farmstead products like cheeses and are hand-crafted for best flavor. Livestock products are processed in nearby facilities and typically the farmer has direct relationship with processors, overseeing quality - unlike animals processed in large industrial facilities.
- Local food is better for you. The shorter the time between the farm and your table, the less likely it is that nutrients will be lost from fresh food. Food imported from far away is older and has traveled on trucks or planes, and sat in warehouses before it gets to you.
- Local food is safe. There's a unique kind of assurance that comes from looking a farmer in the eye at farmers' market or driving by the fields where your food comes from. Local farmers aren't anonymous and they take their responsibility to the consumer seriously.
- Local food benefits the environment and wildlife. Well-managed farms provide ecosystem services: they conserve fertile soil, protect water sources, and sequester carbon from the atmosphere. The farm environment is a patchwork of fields, meadows, woods, ponds and buildings that provide habitat for wildlife in our communities.
Eat Well. Move Well. Live Well.