You Reap What You Sow

As the connection between technology and our world becomes stronger, people become increasingly removed from their food sources by both distance and processing. This idea is centered around the issue of control. In today’s world, inequalities exist amongst voting power and control. There are apparent concrete benefits of eating local food, that food activist, Herb Barbolet addresses in a Worldwatch Institute article. With more control over their own area, communities can feel the full effect of the advantages of local food. These benefits are listed below:

  1. Decreased fossil fuel emissions: With the global food movement, it causes more greenhouse gas emissions and more energy is used. Shorter distance → Less transportation → Less fossil fuel emissions.
  2. Less road congestion from food transportation: Average food items currently travel between 1500 and 2500 miles. This is 25 percent farther than in 1980. By eating local, less trucks are on the road transporting food.
  3. Preservation of local farmland and conservation of local farmers: By catering to local needs, farmers are less likely to go out of business. In addition to providing to a national level, more revenue is brought in to the businesses when they supply to a local level.
  4. Superior flavors: Studies show evidence that market produce is consistently chosen  over long-distance fare by both residential people and professional chefs, as a result of the high quality of local food.
  5. Reduced food safety risks: This benefit is not as apparent; however, thousands of miles and multiple hands causes a larger risk of food contamination. Longer transportation time can lead to increased vulnerability of food items.

Back to the control aspect…when residents have control of their local food production, many choices can be made. People can debate issues of land use, and they can decide what pollutants may have a chance of entering the water. By narrowing their focus, communities are able to hone in on what they actually have control over and benefit through their own choices.

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2 Comments

  1. I LOVE this blog series!! I, myself, am very passionate about eating locally and healthy eating – both for environmental and self-health purposes. Your blog does an exquisite job of giving resources and providing ideas of how and why eating locally is beneficial in many different ways! There are also many different regions of exploration which you can delve into for this topic, which is super neat. Great work!!

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  2. It is obvious that there are tremendous benefits to choosing to eat locally produced food over processed and foreign food. However, I think in many ways technology, although it has caused a less-natural sort of lifestyle to develop around the world, could be utilized in many ways to make the locavore movement even stronger. Technology could allow fresh produce to be grown in the middle of a suburban city, and bring water to some of the driest places on Earth to allow for fresh produce to be made. I know it seems that technology could not have a place in the locavore movement, but it would be neat to see you tie it in somehow.

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