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So is eating local the actual best option for health and the environment?

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  • So is eating local the actual best option for health and the environment?

    So I basically just blindly followed the buy everything from your local farmers market rules that most of these hipsters follow in my town. I decided to do my own research and now I am more confused then ever.
    With articles like these I don't know If should be buying local and organic, mass produced from overseas, from certain parts of the world to help poverty. Some on things I though I was helping with like buying local produce could be possibly having a more negative impact on the environment then imported goods.. So confusing!!!

    How can actually have a positive impact, low carbon footprint, eat healthy, etc...?

    Discuss

    Just a few links to the articles I have been reading.

    Freakonomics » The Inefficiency of Local Food
    How Green is Local Food? – State of the Planet
    Is Local Food Better? | Worldwatch Institute
    Last edited by Anopsmoves; 02-03-2015, 10:41 PM.

  • #2
    On an individual level, something like this: Asceticism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    On a global level, a swift and organized reduction in surplus population.

    On a kinder, gentler level that people actually want to talk about, purchase that which burns the least amount of oil to get to you.

    M.

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    • #3
      Grow it yourself. That is the best possible outcome. That way, if you care for the fetility of the soil correctly you will know that your food has the highest levels of nutrients possible.

      I don't agree that international trade really helps poor economies. What economies of scale and agribusiness have generally done is wholesale ruin local environments all over the globe, encourage the destruction of natural habitats for large scale plantations and then create gluts of commodities which have been over-produced that are then dumped in the sea or leave farmers with no incomes. Poor countries do the worst in terms of trade, generally produce for foreign markets and then get slammed with zero income because of over supply. Shipping perishable food around the globe at great expense I lump into the World's Worst Idea's basket.

      No-one would actually experience a loss of wellbeing by eating in season. I have however experienced large increases in my wellbeing from the satisfaction of growing plants, working the land and caring for soil. It may not be the cheapest lettuce in the world but some things are beyond the value of mere money.

      Comment


      • #4
        Raising animals for meat has indeed an impact on the environment. So ever local farm has an impact. Think about waste, ammonium, etc...so yeah if you are buying locally you are buying into the enviromental impact.

        However, if you buy just what ever you fancy you have to consider transport costs plus the still existend impact the farm has. Eating a nice slice of Scottish or Irish steak is very healthy but you have to consider the miles the meat made before reaching your plate.

        I agree with Claraflo, if you want minimum impact grow it yourself.
        My story, My thought....

        It's all about trying to stay healthy!!!!

        Comment


        • #5
          Yes I agree growing the food yourself of course is the best, but right now I do not have that option at the moment.

          Comment


          • #6
            Buying locally more likely bypasses corporate-farm involvement and processing. Produce should be fresher and without treatment to prolong or speed ripening. But, know your sources in any case, because treated produce can still get trucked in from parts unknown to Farmers' Markets, particularly in metropolitan areas.

            Buying produce in-season improves the likelihood that it is locally grown and less likely to have been treated. Out-of-season produce, and non-local produce will have been processed in some fashion to preserve it and to make it available, out-of-season.

            Frozen fruits and vegetables typically will only have been blanched and frozen. Some will not have been blanched. These are minimally processed and are more nutritious than "fresh" produce, grown hundreds or thousands of miles away, and trucked in. It isn't possible to preserve the nutrients and the appearance of freshness over that timespan without processing and treatment.
            Stop by to visit at http://primalways.net
            Old Paths ... New Journeys

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            • #7
              Just skimmed the links, but what I found particularly in the freakonimics link is that they are speaking primarily to grain production. They pay little attention to methods that local farmers can better utilize to enrich rather than strip their land and environment. Sorry, but these methods are not and will not be adopted by big agriculture. Then they also make the statement that these grain items are the foods to combat the obesity epidemic and we need more of them cheaper!!! Utter FAIL. Their analasys and conclusions are just horrid.

              Comment


              • #8
                i live in new england and neither my b/f or i have even a tiny patch of dirt in which to plant anything, so we have to make smart choices. we frequent nearby farms and the farmers' market in summer for local produce. we have quite a few ipm and organic farms close-by. the main thinking here is to encourage small business and keep our money in the local community. we have a couple nearby dairies that sell amazing milk, cream and cheese and two are now doing "natural meats" -- beef and pork. again, no evil corporate overlord in-sight.

                for fish we are utterly spoiled here, so it is easy to 90% buy local and wild. i do stock tinned wild alaskan salmon though...

                however, our growing season is short, our climate is challenging and i am too spoiled of a modern to only eat local. i still want lemons, avocados, olive and coconut oil, etc.

                even before i was primal, it wasn't too hard to discern that tomatoes in january or strawberries in november tasted like cardboard so were a waste of money. if more people knew what food should taste like, and could appreciate the ephemeral nature of a peach, demand would plummet. my personal decision isn't impacting a mom-and-pop chilean farm, but is parallel to my decision to not support u.s. big ag either.



                As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.

                – Ernest Hemingway

                Comment


                • #9
                  When you look at food production, done in the manner of Polyface Farm, you begin to understand that raising food can have a positive impact on soil fertility and local economies....it takes work to find places like these, however.

                  Me? I buy grass fed beef from a local rancher whose cattle roam on 7000 acres. The ranch is a "Williamson Act" ranch--which means that the land will remain as "open space" (ie not developed in exchange for property tax deductions). The ranchers are actively eradicating non native grasses and replacing with native grasses for the cattle to munch on....

                  All that is well and good, but my life on earth will require me to "take" more than I give....until I am laid to rest in the soil, at which time I will give it all back.....


                  Sent from my iPhone using Marks Daily Apple Forum

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Peter Parker View Post
                    When you look at food production, done in the manner of Polyface Farm, you begin to understand that raising food can have a positive impact on soil fertility and local economies....it takes work to find places like these, however.

                    Me? I buy grass fed beef from a local rancher whose cattle roam on 7000 acres. The ranch is a "Williamson Act" ranch--which means that the land will remain as "open space" (ie not developed in exchange for property tax deductions). The ranchers are actively eradicating non native grasses and replacing with native grasses for the cattle to munch on....

                    All that is well and good, but my life on earth will require me to "take" more than I give....until I am laid to rest in the soil, at which time I will give it all back.....


                    Sent from my iPhone using Marks Daily Apple Forum
                    Exactly what is given back from your embalmed body sealed in a concrete vault?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Artbuc View Post
                      Exactly what is given back from your embalmed body sealed in a concrete vault?
                      some go in the for the dirt nap in a simple wooden box. even embalmed bodies will start to decompose that way.
                      As I ate the oysters with their strong taste of the sea and their faint metallic taste that the cold white wine washed away, leaving only the sea taste and the succulent texture, and as I drank their cold liquid from each shell and washed it down with the crisp taste of the wine, I lost the empty feeling and began to be happy and to make plans.

                      – Ernest Hemingway

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Nah, I'm doing the whole tomb thing like out of Conan.

                        M.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          So eat local or not?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Go for it.

                            M.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Probably best to browse everywhere and stay appraised your options and make judgment calls.

                              National brand animal foods are disappointing/scary. Meat, eggs, and dairy from small nearby producers are easy to find and reasonably priced. The exception is seafood for landlocked folks--make peace with quality frozen or canned.

                              Produce--it should be clear what your region is good at producing. My region has root vegetables, apples, cabbages, and (seasonally) squash, cranberries, tomatoes, fresh herbs. But I'm not going to exclude pineapples and coffee from overseas. US agriculture is so divided between megacrops and everything else, avoiding California produce would be a bleak experience.
                              37//6'3"/185

                              My peculiar nutrition glossary and shopping list

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