At this point most of us are familiar with the idea that our dietary choices have a profound impact on our carbon footprint. No matter how healthy your diet may be, if you're relying on food sources shipped in from half a world away, you aren't doing the environment any favors. Whatever your dietary preferences are, sourcing your food locally and eating with the seasons will help reduce your carbon footprint.
Ready to go local?
Aside from all the logical arguments I can make in favor of local food, there are emotional factors at play as well. Simply put, there is something magical about eating food raised within miles of your home, by people you know, on farms you have visited. It is an experience the feeds both body and soul.
So yeah, I might be a little jealous of all you New Englanders who can rightfully claim cranberry sauce as a local dish. But mostly I'm just excited.
I'm excited to spend the next month on a quest for the most delicious local food I can find. I'm excited to stretch my culinary imagination and learn some new skills (grinding my own cornmeal can't be that hard, right?). I'm excited to visit local farms and markets and get to know my community, and my bioregion, in a more meaningful way. And, when all is said and done, I'm excited to sit down and eat a really damn good meal, surrounded by the people I love.
If any of that sounded exciting to you, too, then I hope you'll hop on the Project Local Thanksgiving bandwagon. And if you're not ready to go all in, thats just fine. How about a modified approach. Go for a 50 or 100 mile radius instead of 30. Or ensure that ONE ingredient in each dish (e.g. the apples in your pie or the rosemary in your stuffing) is sourced locally. However you do it, you'll be nourishing more than just your body this Thanksgiving.
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Click here to check out our Thanksgiving menu and be sure to share your own local Thanksgiving journey with the hashtag #ProjectLocalThanksgiving.