In an age of industrial consumption, few trends have had as profound impact on the way North Americans eat in the 21st century as the local food movement. Prioritizing vegetables and fruits that are in-season and grown close to home as well as locally and sustainably raised beef, pork, poultry, and fish, the local food movement has played a vital role in re-shaping our relationship with our food.
While there are a whole host of reasons why people make a commitment to adopt a more local diet, here are the four main principles underpinning the movement:
One of the most significant drivers of the local food movement has been the growing awareness of the health risks of overly processed foods. Food processing techniques often use sugar, salt, and preservatives to create cheap, addictive foods that have a long shelf life and can be easily shipped around the globe. But these processes usually have the downside of making food less nutritious. Locally produced foods, because they don’t need to travel far, are often more natural, more wholesome, and healthier.
In addition to being better for health, one of the reasons why local meat is becoming more popular is because it is more environmentally responsible. A significant percentage of the food industry’s carbon footprint comes from shipping, so if you want your plate to be more environmentally friendly, one of the easiest ways to achieve this goal is by cutting back on imported foods or foods that have been shipped between provinces and states.
For many consumers, even in a globalized world, supporting the local economy is a priority. In large North American markets like Ontario, many shoppers will actually seek out products from local farms when they can, and have consistently shown a preference for buying meat that has been raised in Ontario.
While it can still be difficult in some parts of the province to find genuine local-raised meat, fresh meat delivery services like truLOCAL have played an important role in connecting consumers with producers. Services like these allow you to get high quality meat delivered to your home safe in the knowledge that it has been sourced from nearby farms, and raised by local families.
Eating local food may be better for one’s health, the environment, and the local economy, but it has also, in recent years, become more fashionable. Many high-end restaurants now proudly proclaim which farms they have sourced their meat from, and serving your own guests local meat isn’t just an ethical choice, it’s a chic one as well.
There are many reasons why people are turning to local meat as an alternative, whether for health reasons, due to environmental concerns, or simply because they want to support producers from within their own states and provinces.
As the local food movement gains momentum, companies like truLOCAL, which connect consumers with the best local producers, are playing a vital role in connecting shoppers with sustainable meat raised in sustainable, environmentally responsible ways.