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Monday Mission: Buy Local Produce

Table Of Contents

Your mission, if you choose to accept, is to find something to buy local this month.

shop for local food

Farmer’s Markets across the country are in full swing, and there’s no better time to find a local source for fruits and vegetables than summer. You might find U-pick berries or just a roadside farm stand with fresh produce available. I love when a mission has plus marks next to all three pillars of stewardship: the earth, your health, and your budget.

Earth: Buying local means avoiding the high environmental cost of transportation/fuel, and usually local produce needs fewer chemicals because it doesn’t have to have such a hearty composition to survive a cross-country semi truck ride. (Local and organic, of course, is even better.)

Health: Buying local produce may not be better for your health than far away produce, but I always find that finding local fruits and veggies, in season, is such a joyful (and delicious) experience that I buy more and eat more. In that way, buying local produce is definitely an improvement for my health.

Budget: Often, local sources of foods are less expensive than a grocery store, especially if you pick your own, buy in bulk, or find a farmer who sells “seconds” for less. (Seconds are the ugly ones!) Sometimes even the regular price is much less than the supermarket prices on fruits or vegetables.

RELATED: Dirty Dozen Food List.

local first fork fest

Not So Fast…

I bet many of you already buy local, regularly. For you, a choose your own  adventure “upgrade” challenge:

  • Learn the name of someone you buy from at the Farmer’s Market
  • Choose a vegetable you’ve never cooked with before and ask the grower for a recommendation on how to prepare it
  • Share your source for local food with someone who doesn’t shop at the Farmer’s Market

How Am I Going to Shop Local?

If you read KS very much, you probably have guessed that a great big chunk of my food budget already stays very local: milk, eggs, some cheese, maple syrup, honey, almost all meat, and this time of year, almost all produce comes from local farmers.

I try to shop at my local health foods store when possible, but I do make some online and bulk orders.

My goal is to spend more of my dollars locally (that I wouldn’t usually) on things like:

  • Local Restaurants I love patronizing small business and know the importance of keeping our dollars right in town.
  • Move amy cheese purchases to local cheese only
  • Focus on local breweries for “fun” beer purchases
  • Choose small, family-owned businesses over big box stores when I can find an alternative
Enjoy shopping locally!

Need More Baby Steps?

Monday Missions Baby Steps Back to Basics

Here at Kitchen Stewardship, we’ve always been all about the baby steps. But if you’re just starting your real food and natural living journey, sifting through all that we’ve shared here over the years can be totally overwhelming.

That’s why we took the best 10 rookie “Monday Missions” that used to post once a week and got them all spruced up to send to your inbox – once a week on Mondays, so you can learn to be a kitchen steward one baby step at a time, in a doable sequence.

Sign up to get weekly challenges and teaching on key topics like meal planning, homemade foods that save the budget (and don’t take too much time), what to cut out of your pantry, and more.

Unless otherwise credited, photos are owned by the author or used with a license from Canva or Deposit Photos.

9 thoughts on “Monday Mission: Buy Local Produce”

  1. We have a great farmer’s market in Ann Arbor, all year-round actually. I haven’t been able to get there last week and won’t this week since we’re on vacation, but last year I got the craziest looking veg ever–a Romanesco broccoli/cauliflower! They suggested cutting it up, tossing with pepper, sea salt, and EVOO and roasting in the oven. So, so yummy 🙂 Keep a look out for it at your market.
    .-= Jessica´s last blog ..Trip To DC =-.

  2. I bought a CSA share this year. I thought I was up on my veggies but the Kohlrabi threw me. Fortunately Twitter identified it and what to do with it. I made hummus and dipped the Kohlrabi in it. I’m going to try stir frying it.

  3. Heather@locavoreintraining

    Thanks so much for your Monday Missions! I LOVE this one, and I’m going to take your “choose your own” challenge to learn the names of more people at the farmer’s markets! I’m already sharing my sources – my new boss has agreed to split a quarter cow with me this year 🙂
    .-= Heather@locavoreintraining´s last blog ..Picked a Peck of Pickles… =-.

  4. We’ve been doing this all year. I’d like to do more, especially with meat (but we did buy half a cow last fall that we are still eating). We are members of a CSA and have gotten quite a few things that we have never made before.

  5. Yesterday morning (before church) I picked 30 quarts of strawberries from a local U-Pick berry place! What a great time, even in the rain. We now have 19 quart bags of strawberries in the freezer and I’m working on making fruit leather with the “seconds”. We also have been eating LOTS of fresh strawberries — I think that’s about all my little girl ate yesterday!

  6. Jen @ BigBinder

    I actually did this last week, we’ve never cooked Kohlrabi and I always let the kids try something new – and that’s what they picked! I had to ask what to do with it.

    Oops! But I forgot to ask her name. It was that organic farm right on the end. Partial credit; I’ll happily repeat the assignment 🙂
    .-= Jen @ BigBinder´s last blog ..What Megan’s Making Nothing – She’s On Vacation =-.

  7. Barb@My Daily Round

    Working on this! We have several farmers markets in the area (Philly), plus a buying club which supplies a lot of stuff at a great price. I do find it hard to stomach the cost of the organic produce available through the buying club.

    Instead, we have a huge vegetable garden and I’m working on finding local produce other ways including buying seconds.

    And, I just wanted to say thank you for all the work you’ve put into your website. You’ve become such an incredible resource, providing a balanced view of the issues.
    .-= Barb@My Daily Round´s last blog does your garden grow- june 28- 2010 =-.

  8. Sarah @ Mum In Bloom

    I started buying local just last year & have learned SO MUCH since then. I bought my first CSA this year & planted my 1st vegetable garden. Next is to learn how to can – scarey! I love the road side fruit stands that are everywhere here. Thanks for all the continued inspiration 🙂
    .-= Sarah @ Mum In Bloom´s last blog ..CSA Week 2 =-.

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