Why not? Fresh, locally grown foods don't just taste delicious - they are better for you, your community, and your planet!
Most food travels over 1,500 miles from farm to plate, while locally grown food typically travels 50 miles or less. This reduces pollution, lowers our dependence on fossil fuels, and protects the environment.
Local food usually arrives in markets within 24 hours of being plucked from the vine or dug from the earth, so it’s unusually fresh and delicious. Fresher foods keep longer, reducing waste in the kitchen, and providing better value for our food dollar.
Because locally grown foods are so fresh they are also more nutritious, containing higher levels of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that healthy bodies need.
Out of every dollar spent in conventional food markets, 91 cents go to suppliers, processors, middlemen, and marketers, while only 9 cents go to the farmer. In contrast, farmers who sell directly to customers at local farmers' markets or through CSAs keep 80-90 cents of each dollar. By selling locally, farmers can reduce distribution, packaging, and advertising costs, and offer us fresher, more affordable food.
Prosperous farmers operate successful farm businesses that enhance our communities, strengthen our local food supply, and protect valuable farmland. These successful farm businesses attract younger generations to farming, making it more attractive to pass on the family farm instead of sell the farm for development.
Local farmers cultivate mouth-watering varieties of delicious foods like Green Zebra tomatoes, Northern Spy apples, Purple Dragon carrots, Buckeye chickens, and many more. These fruits, vegetables, and livestock varieties are bred for flavor, nutrients, and suitability to our local climate and soils rather than for uniformity and ability to withstand a cross-country road trip. Biodiversity never tasted so good!
When we buy local, a greater portion of our food dollar stays home supporting farms and businesses that make up our local communities and regional economy. NE Ohioans spend over $7 billion on food, but less than 1% comes from local farms and producers. Localizing just 10% of our food spending would generate over $700 million for our local economy and communities.