One of the best ways to eat sustainably and healthfully is by eating foods grown locally. This food is fresh and because it is harvested and consumed at its peak, it retains a high level of nutrients and has great flavor. This also happens to be one of the best ways to practice sustainability in terms of food consumption. Learn how to reduce your foodie carbon footprint in eight simple steps below.
One thing to keep in mind is that we all live in different parts of the world and depending on the produce that’s available in your region, you may have to tailor your diet when eating locally grown foods. To find out what produce is in season near you, one guide I definitely recommend is the Eat Well Guide.
How to Reduce Your Foodie Carbon Footprint
1. Grow more fruits and veggies in your garden or purchase more from small farms and farmers’ markets (and bring your re-usable bag with you). This is the most important thing you can do to reduce your nutrition carbon footprint. You will help decrease the energy required to store and transport these foods and they’ll probably taste yummier too. Want some gardening tips? Check out Garden Girl – she’s very knowledgeable and has great great tips!
2. Cook at home more. Who knows where the foods restaurants purchase are from. You not only control where your food comes from, but also what goes into your dish.
3. Finish your plate, as your parents told you. Try not to waste food. If you cooked too much, store some leftovers.
4. Buy only what you need. Don’t over-purchase.
5. Scale down your portions of meat and incorporate more grains, fruits and veggies.
6. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. Reuse shopping bags and lunch bags. Use cloth napkins at the table instead of paper napkins. Use hand towels in the kitchen instead of paper towels.
7. Consider composting, if you have the means. It’s the ultimate garden fertilizer and one of nature’s best mulches and soil amendments. You can make it without spending money and it’s easy to do. Check out Garden Girl for tips.
8. Get involved. Consider joining a local Slow Food group or other organization that supports locally-sourced agriculture and regionally-sourced foods.
Remember, it is important to experiment with new foods and try out seasonal recipes. By eating locally and seasonally, you are supporting small farmers and your community, lowering potential environmental damage and eating high-quality, nutritious foods.
For more green tips, check out Sustainable Table.