Leading a more sustainable lifestyle can sound too complex to many, not knowing where to begin. It's not only the cool factor of being kind to the environment, and means more than saying no to plastic bags and swapping disposable cups with re-usables. The transformation starts with becoming more conscious about where you spend your money and how you shop. Think farmers markets and small independent businesses on your high street. But what is so good about buying local? In this post, we go over some of the reasons why you should consider spending your money closer to home.
A big plus that comes with shopping locally is that you have the right to ask as many questions as you wish. And, you will get a response. Was this produce ethically sourced, was it locally grown? What processes did it go through? You get the gist… Imagine reading this information on the package of your supermarket loaf. Getting to know the makers or the farmers is a priceless plus.
Well, to say it simply, fruits and vegetables from local farmers tends to be a lot (and lot) fresher. There is not a big time lapse between when the produce is picked and when you buy it. This not only makes them tastier, but also insures that they are more nutrient-rich. Besides, when the exchange between the producer and consumer is this intimate, there is accountability. With this accountability comes quality; local businesses tend to offer higher quality and experience, because they so heavily rely on local customers. This is something that is often missing with big chains and multinationals, don’t you think?
Buying locally also helps reduce your environmental footprint. This also means that you will eat fruit and veggies that are in season in your country at that time, a much more natural way to consume. Buying locally also makes shopping zero-waste a lot more attainable. Extra bonus for saving on tonnes of plastic, which is often unavoidable in big grocery stores.
Your shopping experience is likely to be more unique when buying locally. Start by going to your local weekly market; you’ll find local vendors selling everything from fruits to soap to clothing. Ask around, share recommendations and build up the community around you. You’ll soon find that shopping locally is a breeze, and so much more rewarding.
What you put into your community, you and your neighbours get back. It makes something as simple as shopping become a more ethical practice. The benefits of supporting your local community will be felt for a long time, and so the investment is greatly worth it.
Written by Eline Jeanne