Do You Know Where Your Food Dollars Go?
We’ve been seeing a lot of advertising from businesses who are jumping on the local food bandwagon and claiming to support “local and sustainable” but are mostly just selling industrial foods from local distributors or industrial agribusiness. If only a tiny percent of what they are selling is actually locally produced, is that enough to claim it’s what they’re all about?
Is that really what “supporting local” means to the consumer? Supporting a locally-owned business is one thing (and are these “local” supporters even locally owned?), but if the meat or ingredients are being shipped in from far away industrial farms, is that “sustainable local food”?
People want to support our local farmers, but some of our small farmers say these guys are imposters–where are the farms they are advertising as local, and where is the product really coming from? Fair Shares works to connect our local farmers with local producers, e.g. Midwest Pasta, Companion Bread, and SLU to put more local ingredients into the food we put in our shares. This is another way we’re keeping more money in the local economy.
We’ve seen industrial organic usurp the true meaning of the term organic and now we see the same happening with the term local. So, how do companies like Fair Shares and Local Harvest Grocery differentiate ourselves and educate consumers on the importance of really knowing where your food dollars are going?