How To Find The Best Local Produce

Woman being handed a ripe apple in market (Caption: How To Find The Best Local Produce)

Why should I buy my produce locally? It’s usually more expensive and I have to go somewhere else to buy it. What’s the point?”

Price-conscious grocery shopper

Probably something you hear occasionally in discussions with friends or colleagues about produce vs price. There are more benefits than you think when it comes to buying your produce locally.

Why Buy Local Produce? Here’s 9 Reasons

  1. It tastes better! We all know garden tomatoes are better than store-bought tomatoes. That’s how it is with all produce. When you buy local, you receive the freshest produce. It’s probably picked that day, at the peak of its taste so it’s full of flavor.
  2. Shipped produce loses nutrients. After produce is harvested it loses its nutrients. When you buy local produce you are purchasing it right after it’s picked so there are more nutrients in it.
  3. Support your community. Buying locally means you are supporting the local farmers and helping them make a living wage.
  4. Less packaging. When you purchase products from a farmers market or other produce stand it involves less plastic and cardboard, which can hurt our planet.
  5. Helps the environment and wildlife. Farms provide ecosystems by creating fertile soil and protecting water sources. Farm environments help with fields, woods, ponds, and more to help provide habitats for the local wildlife.
  6. Local food is safer. There are fewer transactions between buying locally, which reduces the chances for your produce to be contaminated. Food safety issues increase the greater the distance your food source is from you.
  7. Build relationships. Get to know the people who are growing your food and know more about the people who are providing the food your family eats.
  8. Find out how your food was grown. You can ask the farmer how your produce was grown and harvested. In return, you learn more about the food you are putting in your body.
  9. Seasonal food doesn’t have to travel thousands of miles. By eating foods that are seasonal in your area, you are cutting out all the travel expenses and decreasing your carbon footprint.

Where To Find Local Produce Near You

When you buy local produce you are giving back to your community. Buying food in season from local roadside stands, co-ops and farmer’s markets not only improves quality but also cuts costs. When produce is shipped overseas or across the country, it increases the prices, and taste and freshness are compromised. Buying produce that is shipped results in a loss of nutrients and the number of preservatives is increased greatly.

  • Go to LocalHarvest.org to find a market in your area.
  • Keep gas-guzzling transport vehicles off the roads and rails to reduce emissions and other transportation pollutants.
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