Thursday, July 5, 2007

Eat Local. Everyone's Doing It!

Much to my annoyance, when I type “eat local” into my internet search engine, I am swamped with results (at last count, Google brought up over 42,500,000 links), which leaves me slogging through hundreds of pages of only somewhat relevant information. In the midst of all my toil, I have discovered several Eat Local movements which are floating about on the internet. Judging by the flurry of posts on these sites, thousands have taken them up with fervor, some making commitments to eat locally for as short as a month and others as long as a year. One of the most prominent movements is the Eat Local Challenge, which has in turn birthed smaller, related movements such as the Penny-Wise Eat Local Challenge and One Local Summer. There is also the The 100-Mile Diet (with its accompanying book) and the Food Routes Buy Local Challenge. And then, if you haven’t had enough yet, there is Support Farms Buy Local Challenge and Eat Local Challenge (Not terribly original, this crowd).

The one thing these challenges don’t require of their participants is that the food they obtain also be organic. Which leads me to the question: Is a conventionally grown green pepper from close to home better than an organic green pepper grown 1,000 miles away? The Eat Local movement seems to think so, and admittedly, there are some great incentives to buying local. Just the same, I would like to prove that it's not necessary to have to choose one over the other.

Thank you to everyone who has responded with enthusiasm about this undertaking! I encourage you to subscribe to the feed (scroll to the bottom of the page).


Anonymous said...

Your question regarding the health benefits of locally grown non-organic vs. organic flown/driven in is quite interesting. For example, some farms cannot claim their food is organic because they have not farmed the land organically for more than 50 years. Yet, they do not currently use would their food fit into you plan? B.

Melanie said...

You've made a good point. It's not something that I have given much thought to yet, but since you've brought it up, I will make sure I address it. Watch future posts!