How & Why to Buy Local Produce
Supporting our farmers and growers in this difficult period is vital.
Support local farmers and farm initiatives - buy from them on-line but continue to use markets and local shops if they are still open. But bear with them as they are dealing with major changes and a huge level of demand that they may not be geared up for.
The more support that our farmers and growers get from citizens and buyers the better, and ideally people will keep that support going after the crisis has passed.
Longer term we need to embrace a new, resilient food system for all based on fair dealing and agro-ecological farming. vulnerable so they can still access healthy food and meals, and afford to follow the government's advice to self-isolate.
Meanwhile, too little food is produced sustainably. Nature is telling us to do things differently. One of the big lessons from this crisis is that a two-tier, unsustainable food system is no longer fit for purpose.
The benefits of supporting small businesses –
- Taste Real Flavours
The fruits and vegetables you buy direct from the farmers are the freshest and tastiest available. Fruits are allowed to ripen fully in the field and are brought directly to you—no long-distance shipping, no gassing to simulate the ripening process, no sitting for weeks in storage. This food is as real as it gets—fresh from the farm.
- Enjoy the Seasons
The food you buy direct from the farmers is seasonal. It is fresh and delicious and reflects the truest flavours. Shopping and cooking direct helps you too reconnect with the cycles of nature in our region. As you look forward to asparagus in spring, savour sweet corn in summer, or bake pumpkins in autumn, you reconnect with the earth, the weather, and the turning of the year.
- Support Family Farmers
Family farmers need your support, now that large agribusiness dominates food production in the U.K. Small family farms have a hard time competing in the food marketplace. Buying directly from farmers gives them a better return for their produce and gives them a fighting chance in today’s globalised economy.
4. Look after the Environment
Food in the U.K. travels a circa 1,500 miles to get to your plate. All this shipping uses large amounts of natural resources (especially fossil fuels), contributes to pollution, and creates trash with extra packaging. Conventional agriculture also uses many more resources than sustainable agriculture and pollutes water, land, and air with toxic agricultural by-products. Food direct from the farm is transported shorter distances and is generally grown using methods that minimise the impact on the earth.
- You cant buy HEALTH!!
Much food found in grocery stores is highly processed and grown using pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, and genetic modification. Some of it has been irradiated, waxed, or gassed in transit. These practices may have negative effects on human health. In contrast, most food found at the farmers market is minimally processed, and many of our farmers go to great lengths to grow the most nutritious produce possible by using sustainable techniques, picking produce right before the market, and growing heirloom varieties.
- Variety – the spice of life!
Buy knowing the farmer and by buying direct you will find an amazing array of produce that you don’t see in your average supermarket: red carrots, a rainbow of heirloom tomatoes, purple cauliflower, stinging nettles, green garlic, watermelon radishes, quail eggs, mushrooms, and much, much more. It is a wonderful opportunity to savour the biodiversity of our planet.
- Promote Humane Treatment of Animals
On Harvest Bundle, you can find meats, cheeses, and eggs from animals that have been raised without hormones or antibiotics, who have grazed on green grass and eaten natural diets, and who have been spared the cramped and unnatural living conditions of feedlots and cages that are typical of animal agriculture.
- Know Where Your Food Comes From
Our virtual farmers market is one of the best ways to connect with where your food comes from. Meeting and talking to farmers and food artisans is a great opportunity to learn more about how and where food is produced. Harvest Bundle seller profiles give you even more opportunities to learn about the people who work hard to bring you the most delicious and nutritious food around. Profiles, articles about sellers, and a map of farms are also available on this website.
- Never Stop Leaning, because life never stops teaching – recipe tips and more!
Few grocery store cashiers or produce stockers will give you tips on how to cook the ingredients you buy, but farmers, fishermen, and artisans are often passionate cooks with plenty of free advice about how to cook the foods they are selling.
- Connect with Your Community
Wouldn’t you rather stroll amidst outdoors having bought from these artisans instead of traipsing all around an Air Conditioned supermarket? Visiting the Harvest Bundle market makes shopping a pleasure rather than a chore.