I have spoken before about the benefits of supporting a sustainable culture when it comes to food.Â I am not talking (necessarily) about Organic.Â Because while yes, certainly buying organic has virtues also, they do not (necessarily) always translate well into sustainable.
As a matter of fact, if you check your area, you will probably find farmers that practice good sustainable (and “nearly” organic… the big problem being the the expense and paperwork involved in getting that seal which can be prohibitive to a small local farmer).
Now of course we all know that it benefits the planet if your fruits, vegetables, and so on do not need to be trucked or steam shipped thousands of miles to your grocer.Â Few will argue the benefits to the local economy of keeping those dollars closer to home that you spend.
But until it becomes news, few really pay attention all that closely to the fact that regulations and laws governing food, are lax or non-exitent in many of these countries that many big agri-business source from for cheap goods. Â And even then, most of it goes by the wayside.
I mean, most people are(were) aware of the e.coli outbreak as laid out in thisÂ SF Chronicle article,Â and I certainly hope everybody paid attention to the Peanut Butter recall, but how many people started thinking twice about where their bananas came from, even after Chiquita Bananas was fined $25 million dollars for paying known terrorists protection money to guard their farms in Columbia?Â And while, unless you have been living under a rock, you have no doubt at least heard about the recall of Pet Food, but how many paid enough attention to the story to stick around and hear that animal feed has caused a quarantine of at least one farm where melamine was found in the urine of animals meant for human consumption?
With the warm weather upon us, we are going to try and make an effort to not only shop locally and sustainably, but even hopefully visit a few farms, where not only can we get some great fresh food, but we can actually talk to the farmers, and hopefully teach a lesson or two to LatteGirl about where are food comes from (or should).
Want to find sustainable farmers in your area?Â Then check out the Eat Well Guide over at Sustainable Table. Visit your local Farmer’s Markets when and where available.
Ask questions.Â Build a better relationship with the food you eat, and your body just may thank you for it.