Eating locally grown food is becoming an increasingly popular choice among consumers who are looking to support their local communities and improve their own health. In fact, a recent survey found that more than half of all American adults actively seek out locally-grown products when grocery shopping. But what exactly are the benefits of eating locally grown food, and how can we find it?
The benefits of eating locally grown food
There are numerous benefits to eating locally grown food, both for individuals and for communities as a whole.
One of the main benefits of eating locally grown food is that it is often fresher and more nutritious than food that has been transported long distances. When food is grown locally, it can be picked at the peak of ripeness, ensuring that it is bursting with flavor and nutrients. In contrast, produce that is shipped from far away is often picked before it is ripe in order to survive the journey, resulting in a lower-quality product.
In addition to being fresher and more nutritious, locally grown food is also often free from the additives and preservatives that are used to extend the shelf life of imported food. These additives can have negative impacts on our health, and by choosing locally-grown food, we can avoid them.
Eating locally grown food also has environmental benefits. Food transportation is a major contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, and by choosing locally grown products, we can reduce the carbon footprint of our diets. In addition, supporting local agriculture helps to preserve open space and biodiversity, as well as promote sustainable farming practices.
Supporting local agriculture also has economic benefits. When we buy locally grown food, we are supporting the local economy and helping to keep small farms in business. This is especially important in today’s globalized food system, where small farms are often squeezed out by large, industrial operations. By choosing locally grown food, we can ensure that our food dollars are supporting our local communities and contributing to food security.
How to find locally grown food
So, how can we find locally grown food? There are a number of ways to incorporate locally grown products into our diets:
One of the best places to find locally grown food is at farmers’ markets. These markets, which are held in cities and towns across the country, bring together local farmers and producers, allowing consumers to purchase a wide variety of fresh, seasonal products. In addition to producing, farmers’ markets often also feature meat, dairy, baked goods, and other locally made products.
Community-supported agriculture (CSA)
Another way to find locally grown food is through community-supported agriculture (CSA) programs. These programs allow consumers to purchase a share of a local farm’s produce, and in return, they receive a weekly box of fresh, seasonal items. CSA programs are a great way to support local agriculture and ensure a steady supply of fresh, locally-grown food.
Local grocery stores and co-ops
Many local grocery stores and co-ops also prioritize sourcing from local farms and may have a section or label dedicated to locally grown products. These stores are a convenient option for those who want to support local agriculture but don’t have the time or resources to go to a farmers market or participate in a CSA program.
Direct from the farm
Finally, many farms offer the option to purchase directly from them, either through on-site sales or online ordering. This is a great way to get the freshest, most flavorful locally-grown products and supports the farmers who grow them.
Online farmers’ market
Local Chow is a mobile app that helps people find and purchase locally grown food in their area. Here’s how to get locally grown food from the Local Chow app:
- Download the app: First, you’ll need to download the Local Chow app from the App Store or Google Play.
- Create an account: Once the app is installed, you’ll need to create an account by entering your email address and password.
- Set your location: Next, you’ll need to tell the app where you are located so that it can show you local farms and producers in your area. You can either enter your address manually or allow the app to use your device’s location services.
- Browse products: Once you’ve set your location, you can browse the products available from local farms and producers. The app will show you a list of available items, as well as information about the farms and producers who grew them.
- Place an order: When you find something you’d like to purchase, you can add it to your cart and proceed to checkout. The app will show you the total cost of your order, including any applicable taxes and delivery fees.
- Pay for your order: You can pay for your order using a credit or debit card through the app’s secure payment system.
- Wait for delivery: Once your order is placed, the app will let you know when it will be delivered. Most local farms and producers use their own delivery systems, so delivery times may vary.
By using the Local Chow app, you can easily find and purchase locally grown food from the comfort of your own home. Plus, you’ll be supporting local agriculture and helping to boost the local economy.
In conclusion, eating locally grown food has numerous benefits for both individuals and communities. It is fresher, more nutritious, and free from additives and preservatives, and it helps to reduce the carbon footprint of our diets and support local agriculture. There are a number of ways to find locally grown food, including farmers’ markets, community-supported agriculture programs, local grocery stores, and co-ops, and directly from the farms through platforms like Local Chow. By making an effort to incorporate locally grown food into our diets, we can support our local communities and improve our own health.