Living Local: Find Your Community

living local

How can you make an impact on your local community?
What impact does community have on the local food system and sustainability?

Chuck Minguez of Door to Door Organics and Jeanna Kane of the Doylestown Food Co-op explore what it means to live locally.

Chuck encourages people to go out and join in the change happening in their area. “Get involved with local organizations that support the local foodshed like Bucks County Foodshed Alliance or your local Buy Fresh, Buy Local chapter. Go to meetings and meet the people directly involved in creating change.”

Jeanna also believes strongly in the power of community, like-minded individuals joining together, to affect change. Her words follow.

“This now brings me to Community. This could be one of the most important items to address as we move through climate change. All of the things we need to do as humans living on a changing planet we will need to do together. We are all great at coming together in a tragedy. Just look at how people came together during the aftermath of Sandy. People offered their homes for sleeping, showering, or just a hot cup of coffee or soup. So let’s take that community spirit and use it before the catastrophe. We can help each other plant gardens, we can have better public efforts on getting more alternative energy into peoples homes – subsidized solar panels perhaps. We can get together and help each other learn how to can or cook a seasonal meal. We can support community efforts on getting local food onto the tables of people who can least afford it.

Cathy Snyder of Rolling Harvest picks up a donation of greens and vegetables from Blue Moon Acres in Pennington, NJ

Cathy Snyder of Rolling Harvest picks up a donation of greens and vegetables from Blue Moon Acres in Pennington, NJ

“I do many of these things now through my Ladies Homesteading group that I meet with on a monthly basis in person and almost a daily basis online, as we share tips and tricks for gardening, preserving, holistic health, and other general homesteading ideas.

“I read and read and read lots of books so that I can learn more ways to lower my footprint. But I don’t just read, I also put many of the things I learn into action. I share with others what I have learned through educational efforts.

“I have worked hard to bring about a food co-op in Doylestown that will support the local farmers– and I’m happy to say that we have a location and a targeted opening date of November. [The Doylestown Food Co-op is now open and operating.]

“I support organizations such as the Rolling Harvest Food Rescue that works with local farmers who donate excess harvests to go to local food pantries. They now have about 13 or 14 farmers in their program and are on target to surpass the 48,000 pounds of fresh food that they delivered in 2012.

“Get up each day and see what you can do that day that would lead to a more sustainable, less resource wasting life. I didn’t do all of this overnight.”


By |May 30th, 2014|News|Comments Off on Living Local: Find Your Community

Living Local: Know Your Producers!

living local

What does it mean to live locally?
How can you be a local citizen?

Alex Jones of Fair Food Farmstand in Philadelphia suggests that getting to know your food producer–literally, the source of the food you are eating–will strengthen your civic pride.

In her words:
My suggestion would be to not only give your dollars to local businesses and food sources, but to think of food that you purchase in terms of knowing the producer, not necessarily looking for a certification on the label.

If you’re able to access food from a grower directly, or from an organization or business (such as Fair Food!) that provides transparency and information about its sources, that’s worth a lot more than buying something from a large retailer just because it has an organic label.

I also get really motivated to look for things locally because it deepens the connection I feel to my part of the world — my region, my city, my own neighborhood — and sometimes the history of that area, too.

Farmer Jess Niederer of Chickadee Creek Farm in Pennington, NJ

Farmer Jess Niederer of Chickadee Creek Farm in Pennington, NJ

By |May 2nd, 2014|News|Comments Off on Living Local: Know Your Producers!

Living Local: Buying Local, and Knowing from Whom You Buy

living local


Wondering how you can support your local community? Try committing to buying local, and buying from people you know.

Lisa White, President of the Doylestown Food Co-op, really encourages people to buy local, as much as possible, as a way to ensure the continued vitality of your community. “I love where I live and I would love to be able to help assure that I, and future generations, have everything we need to live comfortably right here in our own area…. and to know that it is the tastiest, healthiest, and best it can be. To live local, you need to commit to buying local for everything that you possibly can!!”

Jamie Hollander, owner of Jamie Hollander Gourmet

Jamie Hollander, owner of Jamie Hollander Gourmet

Another element of buying local is getting to know the people behind that business. This is, after all, one of the biggest benefits of being locally-produced goods: the producers are your neighbors.

Ashley Lyons Putman, Sales Manager here at Blue Moon Acres, believes that a large part of living local is connect with small business owners in your local community. She recommends seeking out the mom and pop shops and patronizing those stores. These are the businesses we want to stay a while. And that’s not the only benefit- “You get quality, too. Someone that is really sticking their neck out for you and providing you with a quality product- staking their life on it.”

By |April 4th, 2014|News|Comments Off on Living Local: Buying Local, and Knowing from Whom You Buy