1) You know where your food comes from
When you buy directly from the farmer, you are honoring the time-honored connection between the grower and the eater. If you have questions about the farmers growing practices, you can ask; if you want to participate and learn more about agriculture most farmers would love to have you!
2) Buying locally keeps money in our community
Significantly more money remains in our community when our dollars are spent at local businesses. Those businesses then purchase more often from other local businesses, service providers, and farms. For every $100 spent at a locally owned business, $45 goes back into the community and our tax base, as compared to $14 back for every $100 spent at a chain store.
3) Small farms help the environment
Small farms are more willing and able to use sustainable practices like growing cover crops to prevent erosion, replace nutrients used by their crops, and capture carbon emissions; using drip irrigation to use less water; and use compost instead of fertilizer to keep chemicals off their land and out of our food.
4) Local food tastes better
Local produce, like that sold at farmers markets and through CSAs, has generally been picked within the past day or two, keeping its bold flavor and crisp texture. Food imported from far away is older and has traveled on trucks or planes, and sat in warehouses before it gets to you.
5) Local seasonal food is better for you
Recent studies have shown that produce loses nutrients quickly. The sooner it is eaten after it’s picked, the better it is for you because those nutrients are retained.
6) Buying local food supports local farm families
Farmers make up less than 2% of the population, and that percentage is decreasing. Local farmers who sell directly to the consumer are receiving 100% of the cost of their goods, giving them the living wage they deserve and allowing them to stay on the farm, doing what they love.
7) Get more variety by buying local
Market-direct farmers grow a huge variety of produce to maximize the growing season, provide an array of eye-catching colors, and please their customers with the best flavors. Livestock diversity is also higher where there are many small farms rather than few large farms.