The solution to this problem is for us all to eat more locally produced food. And, with summertime here, now is the perfect time to eat as much locally produced food as possible. Attend farmers markets (if you live in Maine, click here to find a local farmers market). Search out local produce and meats at the grocery store. If you cannot find a good selection, ask one of the managers to let them know that you want more local foods. Join a CSA (short for "Community Supported Agriculture - click here to find out more). We just had our first pick-up at our CSA (Wolfpine Farm in Alfred, ME) and enjoyed a wonderful salad with fresh lettuce picked within the last couple of days. The bottom line is that our food choices make a difference.
Also, I found a book excerpt from Wendell Berry who is "a farmer and author of more than thirty books of poetry, essays, and novels" titled The Pleasure of Eating. (Click here to read the excerpt). If we all followed his philosophy of connecting with the food we eat, we would significantly reduce the part of our carbon footprint related to our diet. He suggests:
- Participate in food production to the extent that you can.
- Prepare your own food.
- Learn the origins of the food you buy, and buy the food that is produced closest to your home.
- Whenever possible, deal directly with a local farmer, gardener, or orchardist.
- Learn, in self-defense, as much as you can of the economy and technology of industrial food production.
- Learn what is involved in the best farming and gardening.
- Learn as much as you can, by direct observation and experience if possible, of the life histories of plant and animal food species.
Thanks to Dave Pollard and his How To Save The World blog for pointing me in this direction.