A 2002 survey showed the average American will have eaten 1,500 of these sandwiches before graduating from high school.
Yesterday I attended a HomeGrown Local Foods Summit, and, although I already knew many of the wonderful reasons that buying local and supporting local growers is a good idea, this summit really drilled into my mind just how important. I won’t go on & on and list all the reasons why we should ALL be making changes in the way we eat and the way we buy our food, but I do want to touch on one particular thing that really resonated with me.
I believe that part of the problem with getting the general public on board with an effort like the local foods movement is that, as soon as we hear someone tell us that we NEED to be doing things differently, we tend to tune it out. We feel that, by doing as they say and changing the way we do things, we have lost our ability to choose. But as I went through the day yesterday, listening to all the information about this local foods movement, it became quite evident that, by choosing to live a lifestyle that includes local foods whenever possible, I am actually increasing my options.
This slide from the summit blew my mind.
Pay attention to what’s really in the grocery store. It seems like we have so many options but, in reality, we don’t. The food we buy is really controlled by a small handful of companies. In fact, it’s very likely that you have more options for food producers at your Saturday farmer’s market.
Want to start making a difference? How about starting with a better peanut butter and jelly sandwich?
Get a loaf of bread from a local bakery or, better yet, bake your own.
Now purchase your peanut butter in bulk from the local market or food co-op.
Then, treat yourself to a few jars of fresh locally-made preserves from the farmer’s market.
As you eat your much-better-than-average PB&J, think to yourself just how different things would be if every one of those 1,500 peanut and jelly sandwiches that each person will eats before the age of 18 was made with at least one local ingredient.
Kind of blows your mind, doesn’t it?