The local food movement that is sweeping the nation continues to gain traction here in our own river valley. Increasingly consumers, who want to eat real food again, are discovering that buying fresh, local food grown by local farmers is a win-win for both. The farmer benefits when the money goes directly into his or her pocket and also helps the local economy. The consumer wins because just-picked food retains more nutrition than well-traveled food from farms far away. Oh, and then there’s this: farm-fresh, local food just tastes better! So, if you’ve never attended a potluck with people who buy local, direct-from-the-farm food (or perhaps even grow their own) you’re missing out on a real treat. The food these supporters of local farmers prepare for potlucks is awesome. And the conversation is pretty great, too.
Join the conversation
Two words to help you join the conversation in the local food movement: Locavore: First coined in 2005 by a group of four women in San Francisco. They proposed that local residents should try to eat only food grown or produced within a 100-mile radius of their home kitchen table. New Oxford American Dictionary chose ‘locavore’ as its 2007 Word of the Year. Foodshed: First documented use was in a newspaper headline in 1929. “Foodshed” is similar to the concept of a watershed, a term which refers to a connected network of water sources that drain to the sea. While watersheds outline the flow of water supplying a particular area, foodsheds outline the flow of food feeding a particular area. A foodshed starts at a farm (or many farms) and ends at your table and includes all of the interconnected sources and resources in between. We currently have a global foodshed—food from places all around the world. The local food movement encourages people to help relocalize their foodsheds to build a more sustainable food system that also supports local economies.