There are many reasons to buy your food locally.
Locally grown food tastes better and is better for you. The produce is vine-ripened and has been picked within the past couple of days.
Fresh produce loses nutrients quickly. Therefore, the longer it sits, the less you benefit from it. Shorter storage and transportation time also helps avoid post-harvest contamination.
Shoppers have the opportunity to personally interact with the farmer who grows the produce at the Saturday Market. You can associate a face with the name of the farm that grows what you eat. You can also ask them about their growing practices and cooking tips.
The Saturday Market brings people together in a social atmosphere and enables the mixing of diverse demographic groups. The Market also enhances a sense of place for a town. It fills citizens with a feeling of pride in their community.
Contributing to local farms means that they do not have to sell their property. Not selling property means that the agricultural landscape, or “country”, will be protected from commercial development. In addition, it provides a home for many forms of wildlife.
Crops keep the soil fertile, help prevent erosion, and fight global warming. Buying local also helps reduce energy consumption. This is because locally produced food does not require significant transportation or storage.
The Market gives farmers an additional outlet to sell their merchandise at a fair price. In addition, the downtown businesses also benefit because many Market customers patronize another nearby business. Bottom line: buying local keeps money within the community.