Published: May 28, 2009. This is a conversation or question if you will that doesn’t seem to be going away and honestly it shouldn’t. However, it seems that with the re-opening of the various farmers markets across the country and peak growing season underway individuals are once again thinking more about what’s best for themselves and families food wise.
Trying to decide between the local farmer who uses the occasional herbicide or organic from the Supermarket that traveled over 300 miles. Some experts have weighed in, urban areas across the country are challenging residents to eat local, Food
Bloggers are flexing their culinary muscles featuring dishes utilizing local goodies and so I have decided to put my two cents out there as well and I prefer local. One thing to remember which I think new local converts forget is that local doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s organic. Personally I prefer local because I feel strongly about supporting local businesses whether it be a farmer, jewelry maker, etc. There is such a strong sense of community that I get from supporting my local folks. One bonus about being a locavore is more often than not when you speak to farmers at the local market you’ll find out that they do utilize organic and sustainable farming methods but they have never gone through the very expensive and time consuming process to become USDA certified organic. And as for buying organic versus local for me it all depends on the individual food time.
Writer Jeff Cox has written a terrific little guide that I refer to often, “The Organic Food Shoppers Guide”, in this purse size guide the author tells you exactly what foods you should be buying organic and those you can pick up at markets and food stores without guilt. Organic Strawberries, yes but Blueberries, no. Bottom line no matter what you decide be it local or Organic always remember that if you eat seasonably you can’t go wrong in terms of great food flavor. There’s nothing worse than a hothouse tomato in January.
Next Time: Victory is mine, Tales from the Vegetable Patch.
Heather Jones is a wife, mother, freelance food writer, and graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City. She has worked for Gourmet Magazine, TV Personality Katie Brown, and the New York based Indian-fusion restaurant Tabla. Heather resides in New Jersey with her husband and two daughters. She is a strong supporter of the Sustainable Food Movement and believes that education is the key to making a difference.