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What is Local Food?

July 25, 2008

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You probably know how certain foods make you feel. The foods we choose, not only have an impact on our bodies but also on our environment.  Most people do not think about the energy and resources it takes to get the food to the table. Our food travels far and wide before it lands on our dinner table. This journey is referred to as food miles. The more distance the food covers the larger the impact on the environment. Think about it.

The cherries or corn you bought at your grocery store were not grown out back. They had to come from a farm hundreds or thousands of miles away. They probably traveled by truck or plane, which used fossil fuels. The same goes for meat. The corn that cows are fed require oil-based fertilizers. Before you buy meat, get to know where it came from. Get to know your local farmers or ranchers and look for meat that is grass-fed, certified organic and local, whenever possible. When food is locally produced and sold you cut energy use and leave a smaller impact on the environment.

Benefits of buying local food:

  • tastes better
  • supports local farm families
  • promotes environmental sustainability
  • fresher and contains less pesticide residue than regular produce

Check out more benefits on buying locally

About the author

Joshua Rosenthal is the Founder and Director of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. He has worked in the nutrition field for more than 25 years, teaching at the school alongside health leaders including Andrew Weil, Deepak Chopra and Barry Sears. At Integrative Nutrition students are trained as Health Coaches, receiving the holistic nutrition education necessary for them go out into the world and help others improve their health and happiness.