Week 1: Support Local Food Sources

Support Local Food Sources

Photo by Katie Jowett on Unsplash

We’re kicking off our 21 Actions for 2021 with Supporting Local Food Sources. One of the {many} awesome things about Blacksburg and the surrounding area is the farms and local food producers. We are so lucky to have access to such a wonderful source of homegrown options! This week we will let you know about the opportunities available to our community, but first we thought we’d let you know the why behind this action. There are many benefits to supporting local food sources, such as:

Reducing Emissions

Although transportation from farm to table is not the highest emitter of GHGs in the production of food, there is still a good amount of emissions that could be prevented if you supported local food sources (less miles transported from the farm to your home = less GHG emissions).  Local farmers also use far less packaging so you can cut your waste as well.

Supporting the Local Economy

Supporting local food sources means your money stays within the local economy, helping local businesses and farmers thrive. Shopping local also builds community by directly connecting you with the people growing your food.

Eating Healthier

When your food is grown and produced closer to home then it can be harvested closer to the time you eat it. This means that more nutrients from the food makes it into your body. And it tastes better too!

Actions – Big and Small

We’ve covered the why behind supporting local food sources. But how do we do this?

Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)

If you don’t know what a CSA is, here is a quick summary: A farmer offers a certain number of “shares” to the public. These shares usually consist of a box of seasonal vegetables from their farm. If someone is interested, they will purchase a share (membership/subscription) and in return will receive a weekly box of vegetables throughout the growing season. Receiving your payment upfront provides financial security to the farmer and means they can focus on growing the food rather than marketing it. 

Growing Your Own

This can seem daunting but it’s really not and it is so rewarding! And you don’t have to have acres of land to have a productive garden. Growing your own produce can be as simple as having a pot of tomatoes on your deck or a pot of herbs on your windowsill.

Picking Your Own

There are many farms out there that invite the public in to pick their own produce (especially berry farms and fruit orchards!) You can pick as much or as little as you would like and pay only for what you take home.

Farmers Market

If you can’t make it to the farm, then let the farm come to you at the Farmers Market! Blacksburg has an amazing Farmers Market where you can support many local food sources all in one place.

Stay tuned this week (and follow us on Facebook) as we let you know about the many local food source options we have in Blacksburg! And we’d love to hear from you if you know of a local food source we don’t mention!

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