Tuesday, October 8, 2013

{31 Days} Back to Basics Day 8

This month I am participating in the nester's {31 Days} challenge.  My topic for the month is Back to Basics.  If you would like to follow along,  you can find all of my posts here.

Why should we buy local? 

Good question!  Before I heard about a local food movement, I really never thought about where my food comes from, or anything that I bought actually.  When we look at the “from farm to plate” statistic of an average 1500 miles, I think that it shows a great deal on the economy.  Most of our food comes from “away,” and that means that our money is going to companies that buy and transport this food.  When you buy food grown by farmers in your area, you are keeping that money in your local economy.  Buying directly from the farmer takes out the middle man and this allows the farmer to get a fair price for the food that they grow.

In regards to food, I honestly believe it is safer to buy local.  You are buying directly from a farmer, which means you know the practices the farmer has used.  Not to mention your food has not gone through several different stages of handling.  I’m not sure I can think of a time when buying local food has caused some recall of foods due to potential bacteria issues; at least, not in my local food economy.

Buying local should not be limited to local food though.  When you buy from small business as opposed to big box stores, you are keeping more money in your community.  There is a great article that talks about how buying local boosts your local economy – you can find that here.  When the economy on a large scale is still suffering, it makes sense to throw your support to local businesses.  Keeping your local community going is definitely important because it will help to push the larger economy forward.

There is the argument of cost of product.  It is an interesting one for sure.  I know that I can go and get a whole lot of cheap stuff from Target, but that is just the problem!  I can get a whole lot of cheap stuff from Target.  When I know that I need one thing, and instead of going to a store downtown and buying something of better quality, I go to a big box store, but that one thing (which I will probably need to replace in a year) and also buy x, y, and z because they are visible and I think, “I could use that!”  It may be helping the bottom line of another store, but it certainly doesn’t help my bottom line.

Do you try to buy local?  Is it something you don’t think a lot about?  Is it easier to go to a big box store to get what you need?


  1. I do try to buy local and if that isn't readily available we go without or will opt for organic. I like to hit the farms first and go from there. We also east seasonally. Great post!

  2. You bring up an interesting point. Sometimes the item you would like to buy is more expensive at an independent local shop than at a box store BUT chances are you are only going to buy that one item for that very reason. I try to stay out of box stores altogether because I'm usually shopping with my kids. They are tempted when they SEE an item, but it's usually not something they even thought they needed until they saw it. We try to shop in this order: 1) second hand - the goodwill preferably because they put money right back in to the community, followed by our local on-line garage sale. 2) hand made items by a local crafter/artisan. 3) independent local shop owner. 4) if we NEED it, and can only find it at a chain or box store, I try to at least find an item that has been made in Canada. 5) if none of the above, I must REALLY really need it!
    This is a very interesting series by the way. I look forward to the rest of it.

  3. I agree with you whole heartedly. We try very hard to buy everything locally. We belong to a local CSA, we buy many things from local artisans and mom and pop shops. And when I have to go to a traditional chain store, I still shop at the ones in our community rather than the next county over.


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