It seems new labels are appearing daily. I read a newsletter from Food Matters and a recent article on How To Eat Your Way To A Better World begins:
Ever heard the word "locavore?" This was the New American Dictionary word of the year for 2007. A locavore is a person who chooses to eat food that has been grown and produced locally.
I would sincerely like to do my best to eat food that has been grown locally this year. This really is an undertaking because we have become used to so many foods that are not local. From the rise of transportation the entire grocery industry changed dramatically. Trucking, rail, sea and air transport makes the movement of produce easier and faster enabling us to access more and more products that years ago would have been unavailable. Just think if you lived in Maine in the 1800's how rare it would have been to have oranges and if you lived in Utah how rare it would be to have fresh crab? We don’t think how far something had to travel to get to our table. We take groceries for granted.
Americans have become very spoiled with access to such a huge variety of foods. Changing our eating habits is going to be a huge change and one that will take a lot of education and focus. We have to look at the bigger picture regarding reducing our carbon footprint and eating the best food possible. Please check out the article for suggestions and tips on how to begin to change your habits.
I am not planning on exclusively eating only local produce but plan on being very conscious about what I do choose. That is a good way to begin. I will supplement what I grow myself by shopping at local produce stands and Farmer's Markets and surely will can produce grown in my state. I am not willing (yet) to give up oranges and citrus for example. I will attempt to eat citrus when it is in season and learn what other foods are in season in Washington and America.
One hundred years ago when a family went on a picnic they brought foods that were available locally or food they grew in their garden. The average family did not have cheese from France, olives from Portugal, wine from Australia in their picnic baskets.
So to Frugalista, Urban Homesteader, Blogger, Canner, Trainer, Teacher, Apronista, Crafter, Cook I will now have to add Locavore to my identity list. I think I am having an identity crisis.