What are the benefits of local food systems?

By buying locally grown food, you help maintain farmland in your community. When farmers can benefit from food production, they are less likely to sell land for development. It also reduces the environmental impact of shipping food by using limited energy resources. Local foods promote a secure food supply.

Buying locally grown vegetables and fruits helps maintain and preserve green spaces and farmland in your local community. Medical West Main Campus 995 9th Ave SW, Bessemer AL 35022 (20) 481-7000 Independent Emergency Department 5300 Medford Drive, Hoover AL 35244 (20) 820-8416.Choosing regionally sourced foods encourages small farmers to grow native foods that thrive in the local climate. Food is big business and the localization of the food system can have significant benefits for the creation of community wealth. The sustainability attributes of eating locally relate well to health benefits, so the USDA, the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and several international alliances have begun to incorporate local foods into dietary recommendations.

Buying food directly from farmers and suppliers provides you with an opportunity to learn more about agricultural practices and develop connections to your food. One such document is Economic and Community Development Results of Healthy Food Retail (201), by PolicyLink, which highlights the economic development benefits of improving access to healthy food. One of my favorite things about buying local food is establishing connections with farms and food producers. A local food system is a collaborative network that integrates the production, processing, distribution, consumption and management of sustainable food waste to improve the environmental, economic and social health of a particular area.

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