Eat Local Challenge #5

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Happy locavore, happy environment.

Do you ever wonder how your eating habits affect the environment? When you eat closer to home what impact does that have on fossil fuel usage and other environmental factors? We love that eating locally means eating seasonally, which means fresher, more nutritious and more delicious foods to nourish our bodies. While we’re in this spirit of love and nourishment, why don’t we throw some to the environment, too? By eating food that is grown close to home, we are taking one giant step towards supporting our environment.

When food is transported to us from lands far, far away, energy is used to get it to us. But more importantly, small, local farms tend to use fewer pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and they often adopt other environmentally friendly practices such as enriching the soil and creating habitats for pollinators. Local food also keeps local land in production and enhances the local economy. Not to mention, locally-grown food usually requires less packaging… hence, reducing the amount of plastic packaging that gets thrown away. Want to know how to lower your environmental impact even more? Read on!


Today’s Assignment:


Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

When you visit the market this week, bring a reusable bag (or 2 or 3) for your produce and groceries. This will save you from grabbing that new plastic or paper bag. If you happen to forget your reusable bag and are forced to take plastic or paper, remember to reuse or recycle it. Find out if plastic bags are recyclable in your County (they are in Santa Barbara!). Some grocery stores also accept used (and clean) plastic bags when you’re finished with them. Just keep in mind… we use over one trillion plastic bags every year in the world, and most of these go into the landfill. Can you imagine if everyone used a reusable shopping bag every time they went to the store? Major change.

If you already bring reusable bags to the store with you, challenge yourself to buy less packaged things in general. Pay attention to the little ways that disposable plastic creeps into your grocery cart and choose a less packaged alternative whenever you can.

For more on how to save plastic, read the article Let’s Put Plastic In Its Place.

Questions, comments? Let us know what you do to reduce, reuse and recycle in the comments!

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