There are a variety of benefits of eating local. From protecting the Earth to supporting small businesses, local food is the best option when available. Include local produce in a plant-based diet for the most sustainable meals. Whether you’re at home or abroad, check out the local farmer’s market or try that farm-to-table cafe down the block. Chances are, locally-based menus will change daily, feature seasonal produce and taste infinitely better.
Eating local is great for the environment. If you really want to dive into the data, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations has plenty. Although you don’t really need spreadsheets for it to make sense.
When you eat local, the food doesn’t have to travel far to reach your grocery store, which limits emissions from transport. And of course, that lessens your carbon footprint. Buying a variety of food from local food producers encourages diversity at the farms which is better for the soil. Opt for organic when possible to avoid harsh chemical pesticide use, which is harmful for both the planet and your body.
Local food is tastier, but it can also be healthier. Less nutrients are lost in the transport process, so all of the fiber and vitamins make it into your food. This aids in immunity and helps keep you healthy at home or while traveling. Eating local honey has been shown to help relieve allergy symptoms and boosts the immune system as well.
Buying local products supports local farmers, rather than large corporations. This keeps the local farms running and the money stays in your local economy. Ultimately, this helps your neighbors and creates more local business. ‘Shopping small’ keeps your community afloat and brings you closer to those in your town. Organic, local food can also be cheaper than options from far away.
Local food is usually seasonal, meaning that the fruits and veggies are a lot fresher. This is one of the most noticeable benefits of eating local. The food tastes significantly better. Local farms also offer a variety of options you may have never tried, helping you expand your flavor profile. Shaping your recipes around seasonal, local produce ensures a delicious, fresh meal.