The line for many may be something entirely different, but here it starts with me. The wife. The mother. The individual. The customer.
Change STARTS at the bottom of the doggy pile. Although this can be applied to other aspects of my life, today, I am writing about food.
Recently, I was made aware of a great local price on market-ready hogs and I jumped on it. As always, folks were concerned with what they were fed, natural…organic.
Yada Yada Yada.
I understand the concern and am perfectly aware of the amount of chemicals our whole foods are exposed too….EVEN ORGANIC….
…but here’s how I look at it.
Living in Alaska, we are geographically isolated from the rest of the Lower 48 which means, if we want to EVER have any hope of having some sort of food security, we need to start here at home….first.
Buy Local FIRST!!!
Because of the simple fact that a customer has more influence over a farmer than someone that just stands back and whines about what they do and how they feed their livestock.
Once upon a time, you were eating meat off the shelf, so why the “high horse” now?
Are you really effecting the change needed, buying organic from a store who fights for 1-2% profit margin? Who is naturally going to look for the most inexpensive “organic” food to put on its shelves…..that are all owned by Pepsi Cola and General Mills as it is? As always…..FOLLOW. THE. MONEY!!!
From my perspective, it’s important to know your farmer. To know that the money you put in his hand goes directly home with him, to his family. You pay extra because he is not subsidized by Uncle Sam. You need to see the days when he and his boys are tired, but still “showing up” providing you with the best product they can, here and now. It’s MORE important that you support your neighbor….. Don’t you think? He has the knowledge to provide food for your family regardless of what the “world economy,” or lack thereof, looks like.
You need to help create a buyers market for your farmer. Most farmers are not salesmen, the are not business men, they may not even realize the importance of marketing, but a conscious consumer DOES. You’ve watched, read and researched….you know what you want and what others like you are buying. Hell, some of you are researching BETTER ways to feed livestock RIGHT NOW. The knowledge is out there. You need to help bring buyers back to the farm. It’s part of creating a sustainable community.
In the land of earthquakes, with an already damaged port, what would happen if the stars aligned and our main source of our imported food was cut off? “Off Line” for even a week, or a month while repairs were made?
Think about how that would effect you and your family?
Hell, look what happened when the software program for food stamps had a glitch, within hours the local shelves were empty. There is no three-day supply……three HOURS maybe.
Now think about what would happen if your meat was purchased locally? If your meat was never on the market shelves, if it was only farm-to-freezer?
It starts with a person.
…..THEN we can worry about everyone else.
~Off like a crazy woman.
P.S. I’ll be at our first year-round Farmers Market tonight…in Palmer, Alaska. Buying SOMETHING to put in a jar!! 😀