Don’t be alarmed. Heading to the local farmer’s markets on a Saturday won’t instantly turn you into a hipster (it may, it time). But, what it will do is open your life to the many benefits of eating local.
If you’re new to eating local, knowing what it actually is - and where to start - is hard enough. It can mean a number of things, but start here:
Eating local can mean purchasing foods that are made from Australian ingredients and processed in Australia (look out for the label 'Product of Australia'). And when it comes to produce (you know, the real food), your local farmer’s market is where it’s at!
Here are just a few reasons why you should eat local:
It tastes SO much better
It’s true what they say, once you go local, you never go back – people do say that, right? In all seriousness though, you really don’t know what you’re missing out on until you start eating local produce. You’ll just have to trust us on this one.
It’s fresher and lasts longer
Once you start buying local, you’ll notice that some of your veggies will last a lot longer than if you buy imported. Generally, the produce from farmer’s markets will be picked around 24 hours before you buy them the next day. This freshness makes a huge difference, especially if you’re the kind of person that forgets about your veggies and ends up chucking them out. You’ll be less likely to waste your food, which is a win in our books!
Being a part of the community
How well do you know the people around you? Surveys have shown that 65% of Australians are only connecting occasionally with their neighbours, or they aren’t connecting at all.
Buying local, or going to a local farmer’s market, gives you the opportunity to connect with and support your local community. Interacting with people within our community has even been revealed to make us happier** – so it’s worth it for everyone!
It’s better for the environment
Whether you consider yourself a greenie or not, you’ll actually be doing a solid service for the environment if you eat local.
1) As we’ve already mentioned, you’ll be reducing your food waste, and
2) You’ll help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. According to a report from by CERES, a standard basket of food has travelled 70,000kms before we purchase it, which contributes to greenhouse gas emissions.
You’ll be living in the future
Not exactly time travel but if we’re thinking about sustainability. It is estimated that the world will need to increase food production by 70-100% by 2050 (that’s only 32 years away by the way…) to cater for the population growth. Long story short, communities will need to move towards a more self-sustainable approach. So you’re essentially living in the future if you start buying local.
If you’ve never been to your local farmer’s market, make sure you do a quick search to find yours. It’ll change your life for the better.