This is a question I have been pondering a lot in recent months. I have known all along that my ignorance in this matter could be allowing all kinds of things into my body that had no business being there. The cost to myself, the planet, and others, also worried me, when I considered how far my food traveled, who made the income from growing it, and whether a forest had been cut down for the farmland.
When I checked out the audio book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver and her husband Steven Hopp and daughter Camille Kingsolver from my local library a few months ago, many of my questions were answered. Barbara and her family had decided to spend a whole year being "locavores." This was her word for people who grow their own food, and/or bought everything they ate from local farmers. The book was not only a wonderful adventure through their year of farming, cheese making, egg harvesting, and turkey sex, (yes, I said turkey sex), it was also extremely informative about the costs and problems of eating whatever we want, when we want it.
I decided before I finished the book, that I was going to do all I could to become a "locavore" as well. One of the first choices I made was to start a small organic garden of my own. This was pretty simple. I ordered green prefab garden beds, bought local organic soil, and found organic and heirloom vegetable seeds on the Internet. My husband joined me in this project and we have had some interesting moments, working together on the project. When I walked outside one morning and saw the first seeds coming up, the beautiful broccoli leaves you see in the photo above, my heart swelled. Our property is small and what we grow will not sustain us this year. We are very lucky to have a wonderful farmers market through the fall, and many local organic farms who are part of Community Supported Agriculture or CSA. The adventure will continue as we buy all our fruits, vegetables, and other items from these places as the year moves on.
For anyone considering becoming a "locavore," here are some wonderful resources:
I will keep you posted as I learn more, grow more, and become more.
Peace and Love,