By Cindy Naas
The more I get involved in growing my own food in a city garden, the more I start to change other aspects of my life.
A lot of people involved in the urban farm movement are staunch supporters of the 100 mile diet, and I am investigating this further, too.
The 100 mile diet- When you buy food at your local grocery store, chances are the produce has traveled 1000 miles or more from farm to your table.
The advocates of the 100 mile diet try to eat only food which is grown within 100 miles of their homes. They claim there are many benefits to buying and eating locally. Here is a list of reasons to do so, from 100milediet.org:
1. Taste the difference.
2. Know what you’re eating.
3. Meet your neighbors.
4. Get in touch with the seasons.
5. Discover new flavors.
6. Explore your home.
7. Save the world.
8. Support small farms.
9. Give back to the local economy.
10. Be healthy.
11. Create memories.
12. Have more fun while traveling.
I agree with the concept. Contributing to the local economy is important. Eating more healthily is important to me as a mother. I am not a fan of huge agri-business farms, and I buy everything that I can which has been raised using organic methods. I’m concerned about the health of my family and of the planet.
Veggies bred only for their ability to withstand shipping hundreds of miles don’t taste nearly as good as the delicious heirloom varieties my family prefers. There are a lot of really good reasons to at least try the 100 mile diet.
During the summer when I can grow my own veggies and also frequent my local farmers’ markets, this sounded like a fantastic idea. Now that the farmers’ market here is mostly attended by people selling crafts- hand-knit mittens were beautiful this week – it is more of a challenge.
Furthermore, I have a guilty secret- I absolutely adore oranges and I can’t imagine cooking without lemons and limes. However, I am working hard at eating locally for several meals a week, and I intend to work on making it a full-time commitment during the summer months.