4.01.2010

Good Morning Ohio: Ohio Proud

OhioProud


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Good morning to central Ohio's Ohio Proud!

With April upon us, I can't help but think of planting flowers and veggies, dusting off my bike and hitting some great local farmer's markets. (Hello, sunshine. I missed you!) We Ohioans are extremely lucky to have been blessed with an abundance of local farms, but many of us don't take advantage of our local farming community nearly as often as we should.


Something I've been thinking about for awhile now is committing our household to a locally-centered diet, where the majority of what we consume comes from our home state (though I don't think I could commit to 100%. I would miss grapefruit too much!) Have you ever considered doing something like that yourself? Well, if you're in Ohio, the resources to support buying locally made and grown products are phenomenal. Just take a look at one of my favorite resources -- Ohio Proud. Based in nearby Reynoldsburg,  Ohio, Ohio Proud's website is a treasure trove of information and a great resource for finding local farmers markets, recipes, partners, and affiliate members selling and supporting all things Ohio-made, like the Fresh Fork Market in the Cleveland area and Buelers Fresh Foods and Heinen's grocers located all over Ohio.

Even if you're not in Ohio, I encourage you to find and support local farmers and grocers. Here are a few benefits of shopping local farmer's markets (as shared from Culinate.com):

• Locally grown food tastes and looks better. The crops are picked at their peak and have not been sitting in warehouses.
• Local food is more nutritious. The shorter the time between farm and your table the less likely it is that nutrients will be lost.
• Local food preserves genetic diversity. Smaller farms can grow a variety of products without worrying about shipping time and shelf life.
• Local food is safe. Local farmers take pride in the product and hope that the customer will return each week. We are not anonymous and Farmers take their responsibility seriously.
• Local food sales supports local families. Often wholesale prices are near the price of production. By cutting the cost of the middleman and producer receives a better return which helps keep families on the farm.
• Local food builds community. Local vendors often share stories, recipes and information which helps you, your children and your grandchildren learn about nature and agriculture.
• Buying locally cuts down on pollution by reducing the miles reliance on imported foods, which are often shipped or flown from foreign countries.

Don't forget to check out Ohio Proud's farmer's market search for markets in your area! Happy eating and planting!

4 comments:

Bonnie said...

Great post! Last summer I started to frequent the Creekside Farmers Market in Gahanna. It is nice to meet the people who grow your food.

We also have a vegetable garden at home. Another great Ohio resource is Livingston Seed. I am starting some plants indoors to get a head start. I also just planted a patch of lettuce outdoors.

MSM said...

Every year I keep telling myself I will hit our town's Farmer's Market which is literally 3 minutes from our house every Thursday from 4-7 during the growing season, and never do.

You have just made me commit to it. All GREAT reasons, I just get lazy and there is no excuse anymore. I am going to see if hubs might want to do as sorta a "date" kinda thing.

Evelyn said...

Thank you for stopping by to leave me great comments!

@ Bonnie - I used to work near Creekside in Gahanna. What a lovely area. I'll have to make it out to their farmer's market! A BIG thanks for the info on Livingston Seed. I'm going to look them up and try to get a start on starters, too.

@MSM - I hope you do become a weekly patron of your local farmer's market! Maybe you could both take a walk, if it's not too far, and pick up some tasty treats :)

Chantale said...

I so agree with you! Now's the time when our farmer's markets are just about cleaning up their stalls too. I can't wait for our local produce to hit the stands! If I were there, I'd buy Ohio Proud but as it is, I am buying Qu├ębec Proud! lol. Sisters&brothers in arm? Yes! : )

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