Tag Archives: Local Produce

The Great Debate?

Good evening, ladies and gentleman.  I sit before you tonight as I am watching the President’s Address from the Oval Office. 

I feel very much like a grown up 😉

DSC03185

I’m not an expert, but it does sounds like they have a pretty thorough plan in place.  I hope that those responsible pay for their actions, that we get this under control quickly, and that America learns a valuable lesson from this horrendous manmade disaster.

I completely agree with Obama as he pleads with Americans to dissipate our addiction to fossil fuels.  Like he said, at one time, we believed it was impossible to send a man to the moon.  I would like to know how it is possible that we can send a man to the moon, but that we haven’t yet found a way to create a system that includes greater access to public transportation, safe bike lanes and sidewalks, a more safe and sustainable food industry, and homes and businesses that rely heavily on renewable energy sources?

I’m not sure that my individual actions will be able to make any drastic changes, but I do know that all small actions can add up to make great differences. 

Here are a list of ways you can make smarter food choices to help reduce your reliance on fossil fuels as listed by Sustainable Table.org

What You Can Do

  • Buy foods grown locally. The equation is simple: the closer the farm is to you, the less fuel is needed to transport its food to your table. You can find local foods through our Eat Well Guide by visiting a local farmers market, or by joining a food co-op or Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) group. See our Shop Sustainable page for more information. And while you’re at it, ask your grocery store to supply locally grown produce.
  • Want to have lettuce that’s truly local? Plant a garden and grow your own fresh produce!
  • Avoid purchasing processed foods. These foods take more energy to produce (and have less nutritional value than whole foods). In addition, choose foods with minimal packaging. This reduces the energy used to produce the packaging and eliminates these materials from the waste stream.
  • Cut back on meat. As much as Americans love to eat it, meat is the least fuel-efficient food we have. Large quantities of energy are required to cultivate, harvest, and ship animal feed, house, transport and slaughter animals, process and package their meat, and refrigerate it until it’s cooked.

[Source]

It is not my intention to create a great political debate here, but I do hope that these recent events have made you somewhat question how humans are impacting the Earth, and how this may be impacting our overall health. 

Have you ever wondered if there was a direct correlation between our higher dependency on oil in the past few decades to the rise in American obesity rates?  Could it be that driving everywhere instead of walking or riding bikes made a difference?  How about our ability to access highly processed foods that are manufactured thousands of miles from our homes and shipped by planes and trucks to local grocery stores? 

This very small post on HH,HM will not save the thousands of plants and animals affected in the Gulf’s precious ecosystems, but I do hope that this tragedy will make more people stop and think about the choices they make every day. 

What can you do to make healthier choices and lessen your dependency on fossil fuels?  What are you already doing?

~Jen

magnolia Remember, Be Happy, Be Healthy, Be You!!!

Advertisements

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Livin’ la Vida Local

I am still floating on cloud 9 this morning after my long run yesterday.  All I want to do is run, but I know that I need to give my body a little time to rest before I hit the pavement again.  I am feeling the true definition of a “runner’s high.”   

My knees are the only part of my body that is sore today.  I think I owe these limber limbs in part to following  13 Yoga Poses to Help Runners and Other Athletes.  These stretches were great, and they gave me the opportunity to sit quietly with my breath for a few.  Who wouldn’t benefit from that? 😉

Yesterday after my run I stopped by this local legend: Ellwood Thompson’s Local Market.

rotate-1.jpg

Ellwood Thompson’s is a local market that carries local produce and goods for the Richmond area.  It is actually the largest independent natural/organic market in all of Virginia. 

I have lived in this area for almost 5 years now, and yesterday was the first day I visited the market.  I even used to live within walking distance!  However, seeing as how this week is the week of first evers, I thought I’d finally give it a try. 

I’m so glad I did!!!  Here’s a glimpse of my very selective purchases.

DSC01674

I found chia seeds and nutritional yeast, which I have been searching for since November.  Most (as in I haven’t found a single one) chain grocery stores do not carry these, so you can only imagine how excited I was to see these products casually sitting on the shelf and in the bulk food bins.  Jackpot!     

DSC01676   DSC01679

I also found Virginia made Twin Oaks Tofu.  You may remember that I had the pleasure of eating Twin Oaks Tofu at Balliceaux back in early March, and it was really out of this world!  I wonder if I can recreate that same delectableness in my own kitchen…  

DSC01675

The pups got some all natural doggie treats for minty fresh breath.  And boy, do they need it! 

DSC01677

For lunch I got a Buticha Ethiopian Garbanzo Bean Wrap, and I must try to duplicate this recipe.  It was seriously delicious! 

Anyone know how to make Buticha????   

DSC01678

I also got a bottle of Annie’s All Natural Goddess Dressing, FAGE Greek Yogurt, an an avocado, because they were all on sale. 🙂

One thing I was super excited to see while at ET’s (other than the chia seeds and nutritional yeast, of course) was that a variety of their produce was supplied by Victory Farms

Last week, I was invited by a friend to share a CSA membership to Victory Farms Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.  Each week beginning in mid-April, we get to go to one of their stands at a local Farmer’s Market and select fresh produce that was grown less than 20 miles from our own home! 

There are so many benefits to eating and buying locally. 

    1. You’ll get exceptional taste and freshness.
      Local food is fresher and tastes better than food shipped long distances from other states or countries. Local farmers can offer produce varieties bred for taste and freshness rather than for shipping and long shelf life.
    2. You’ll strengthen your local economy.
      Buying local food keeps your dollars circulating in your community. Getting to know the farmers who grow your food builds relationships based on understanding and trust, the foundation of strong communities.
    3. You’ll support endangered family farms.
      There’s never been a more critical time to support your farming neighbors. With each local food purchase, you ensure that more of your money spent on food goes to the farmer.
    4. You’ll safeguard your family’s health.
      Knowing where your food comes from and how it is grown or raised enables you to choose safe food from farmers who avoid or reduce their use of chemicals, pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, or genetically modified seed in their operations. Buy food from local farmers you trust.
    5. You’ll protect the environment.
      Local food doesn’t have to travel far. This reduces carbon dioxide emissions and packing materials. Buying local food also helps to make farming more profitable and selling farmland for development less attractive.
    6. When you buy local food, you vote with your food dollar. This ensures that family farms in your community will continue to thrive and that healthy, flavorful, plentiful food will be available for future generations.  (SOURCE)

I for one can NOT wait to begin picking up my weekly produce.  What a great way to eat close to the source!  Just think of all the clean meals I will be able to create!  I’ve decided to to plan out a week’s meals based on the produce that I get from the Farmer’s Market.  I think this will open a whole new world of recipes for me! 

I also plan on visiting Ellwood Thompson’s more regularly for rarities such as chia seeds, nutritional yeast, local tofu, and other central Virginia goodies 🙂

Have you ever been involved in a CSA?  Do you aim to eat and purchase locally grown produce???  What are your thoughts???

6 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized