Say yes to local and sustainable groceries
This is a quote from Sun Magazine, in an article by Kathleen Dean Moore, "If Your House Is On Fire." I like this quote, so I would like to share it.
"Deciding we won't drive to that chain grocery store and buy that imported pineapple is a path of liberation. Deciding to walk to the farmer's market and buy those fresh, local peas is like spitting in the eye of the industries that would control us. Every act of refusal is also an act of assent. Every time we say no to consumer culture, we say yes to something more beautiful and sustaining. Life is not something we go through or that happens to us; it's something we create by our decisions."
This quote speaks of the power we have as consumers--what we choose to blindly consume, or not to consume with conscious. The industrial food giants would convince us that we can not cook for ourselves, that we must rely on their pre-made everything--from canned beans, to boxed soup, to frozen meals. We can make much better food that what is batch produced with uncertain ingredients or under uncertain conditions. Pre-made is undoubtedly easier and "quicker," but it is in no way healthier.
The quote specifically addresses buying imported food vs local food. Trying to purchase local food at a grocery store is often a challenge. I look at the labels on my apples, zucchini, etc. I at least try to buy from the USA. It always stuns me how the "organic" produce is mostly from Mexico or other countries, when I know we grow ample organic produce throughout America, even locally. How "organic" is something really if it is coming from a country where health and agricultural regulations are not as strict as ours? How environmental is it for us to consume that produce if it has to be shipped thousands of miles across international borders to get to us? How fresh and healthy is it if it has to survive the length and process of the shipping? There are many times I opt for a local farmers market even if it is not organic, but it is always a challenging decision. Freshness and reliable standards VS toxic pesticides/herbicides/fertilizers?
I would like to raise my voice more as a consumer, demanding local organic fresh produce at our grocery stores and farmers markets. There is at least one grocery store in my area, Wegmans, that does have some local organic produce. With more voices, more consumer demands, the other stores will listen and provide. Bottom line, they want our money, and they will provide if they feel enough people will give them their money (or, even more importantly, withdraw their money from them by not purchasing from them any more). Will you join me in raising your voice for better, healthier, sustainable foods at your local grocery store?