Over the years, my stance on locavorism has changed from “eat local” to “shop local”. My thinking? For the most part, you’ll attack the problem from two ends instead of one. Many local restaurants end up buying from local food vendors, and conversely, local markets are more likely to stock local products upon the shelf (in amongst the national ones, of course).
But the real reason for all this is keeping as much money in the community as one can.
I’d left this argument for a while, until Andrew Sullivan reminded me of it recently, as he pointed out a report (and handy infographic, below) from Local First.
They, in turn, refer to Michael H. Shuman, author of Going Local, who said:
Going local does not mean walling off the outside world. It means nurturing locally owned businesses which use local resources sustainably, employ local workers at decent wages and serve primarily local consumers. It means becoming more self-sufficient and less dependent on imports. Control moves from the boardrooms of distant corporations and back into the community where it belongs.
Which is something worth considering as we enter into the busiest shopping days of the year.