So I'm embarking on a wee project for myself. I am continually frustrated that I don't choose healthier options for eating when I KNOW it would do me (and my CFS) a world of good. Soooooo, I am going to attempt to implement something I feel very strongly & passionately about, but have been too, well lazy, to actually put into practice. And that is eating locally, seasonally, and sustainably/humanely.
Today I went to my local farmer's market...one I've been too many times before...with $60 in cash to see if I could buy 1-week's worth of real-live-local-seasonal-organic-sustainable food & actually live off it for the entire week. I have no idea if I can, and I've no illusions that I won't have other foods of some sort throughout the week, but I wanted to challenge myself just to see. Mind you, I can easily spend about $100 at the regular grocery, buying food that I won't end up eating or that will sit in my freezer for months forgotten. That also accounts for buying non-food items as well, of course.
Today at the farmers' market, I spent about $57 & I got (from back to front, left to right in the photo above): 2 fennel bulbs, mint, 1 dozen chicken eggs, 1 lb ground pork, 1 bunch celery, 1 boneless chicken breast, 2 pints strawberries, 1 whole chicken (she's tiny), 1 lb uncured bacon, 1 bunch kale, 1 bunch beets, 2 grapefruits, yellow beans, and 2 chicken leg quarters.
The chicken & eggs are from Oaks of Marme Farm just 50 miles NW of Houston in Hempstead & the pork is from Harrison Farms in nearby Beasley, and I tried to vary my veggie vendors, getting a couple of items from different ones, but I only bought items which were marked as "organic" or "sustainable"...not "conventional".
Now, I'm not the biggest chicken fan in the world, but guess what, I didn't see any beef in the market today, so either it's not the season for beef or that farmer slept in or I wasn't looking carefully enough. But the thing about buying local & seasonal, is you buy what's available because what's available is the right thing to eat for that time of year. So chicken, eggs & pork it was for me for my protein choices...there was some goat & lamb, but I passed on those. I meant to buy some beef snack sticks I saw, but I forgot to go back & get them when I was getting my cold stuff...& I'm kicking myself!
I've seen many documentaries...the standards: Food Inc, Food Matters, Hungry for Change, and several more I can't recall at the moment...and they all spoke to me & inspired me. But I watched another one recently that really propelled me...not sure if it was the quality/presentation of the information in the documentary itself or that I watched it at a good point for personal change. It's called Fresh & I admired the stories of the farmers who are doing it right...the ones who are bucking the system to make a change for themselves & the rest of us too. I felt empathy for the other farmers, the ones who are stuck in the system, strangled by the agri-business choke-hold in order to keep their farms & their families going despite knowing it's a losing trap. I decided I wanted to finally be part of the solution, not the problem. I think Whole Foods & grass-fed/pasture raised items in supermarkets are a start, but for me, it's no longer good enough. I feel you've got to get off my ass, stop being lazy & get local!