Monday, October 17, 2011

Benefits of Buying Locally

better health
There are a lot of benefits to buying produce locally!  We are lucky enough to have several farmers and marker’s markets in my town and surrounding towns.  The kids love visiting the farmers and getting fresh fruits and veggies!  We also have a organic co-op locally that delivers which is great.  I have used them several times.  You just need to get used to washing your own produce really well because everything is covered in dirt.
Support the Local Economy
It is really nice to help a local neighbor for all their hard work.  I love helping family owned businesses too! This is a great way to help your local community.
Better Taste
Buying locally usually tastes better! It is usually fresher and not picked to early for shipment.  If you know the farmer, you can ask what chemical or pesticides they use so you know exactly what you are getting.
Better Nutrition
Local produce usually has better nutrition value for the same reasons they taste better.  Everything is fully ripen so it didn’t lose any nutrition value.  Again, you will also know what chemicals are used.
Save Money
By buying locally, you can get what is in season and that means you can usually buy it for a great price plus you don’t have to pay for shipping and retail costs.  When you find a good deal, you can freeze or can so you can have local produce all year round.
Smaller Carbon Footprint
When you buy locally or grown your own food, you will help save carbon emissions from all the transporting.
To find a farmer near you, go to
Here is a guest post from my sister-in-law, Ann Marie from White House, Black Shutters, where she compares local eggs vs. store bought eggs.

white house, black shutters

Driving home from the store the other day, I happened to see a hand-painted sign advertising “Fresh Farm Eggs” with a big arrow and was soooo excited! I would describe our area as rural, we do back up to a cornfield, but I am 10-15 minutes from a few large cities and all the shopping I could want or need. We’re only 45 minutes from Chicago, we’re not in the middle of nowhere necessarily, but we’re bordering on it!
When I walked up to the farm, it was a family who thought that raising chickens would be healthier and could be fun. The chickens were roaming their grassy yard with no fence, not kept in confinement, some even were walking up to me! These chickens were as free range as they could be!  At $3 a dozen, it was only double what I’m paying now, and half of what I’d pay for the comparable eggs from Trader Joe’s or any other health foods store. I think that’s doable, especially considering the health benefits!
I still had some store eggs when I stopped at the farm, so I thought it would -be fun to compare the two. The store eggs are the cheapest ones from Trader Joe’s ($1.39) and the only thing I know is that they were raised without growth hormones. The farm eggs are from free-range chickens, raised on grass and bugs (what chickens should be eating!) and some organic corn feed, with no chemicals, antibiotics, or growth hormones.
Look at the eggs above on the left and then on the right, the darker the yolk the more nutrient rich. The eggs on the left are those from the farm, DARK orange and full of good nutrients and because of the way they are fed, omega-3 long chain fatty acids (some of the good stuff found in mothers’ milk). The ones on the right are those from the store, a darker yellow than some I’ve seen, but you can tell they’re not even the same shade as the farm eggs.
The whites of the eggs on the left aren’t separate, there’s not a thick part and a runnier part, it’s all thick. The eggs on the right I actually put into the pan first, waited a good 30 seconds, and then added the farm eggs. The whites are still separated and took another 30 seconds to cook after I had already taken out the farm eggs.
After they were done, you can see the store eggs on the left and the farm eggs on the right. The store egg white was a bit cloudy while the yolk was a paler yellow. The farm egg white is more clear and a pure white while the yolk is a dark, almost fluorescent, orange.
But most importantly, they taste SOOOOO MUCH BETTER!
Let me just say, I don’t mean to sound like a snob comparing the eggs, I was just curious! We eat store eggs and still will if we can’t make it to the farm. Eggs are great for you no matter what kind you’re eating, but if you have the opportunity to get farm eggs, I highly encourage you to support your local farmers! If you can afford to pay a bit more for a better quality egg, there is a difference!

Thanks Ann Marie for the great post! Smile
Do you buy locally?
What do you like about ?
Have a healthy day!!
Bonnie ;)


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