Hudson Valley Weekly Shopping Adventures (Buying Local)

| September 15, 2015 | 0 Comments

Fredrick Douglass in his autobiography said, “Knowledge makes a man unfit to be a slave.” Maya Angelou said, “When you know better, you do better.” I bring the wisdom of both mentors with me every time I go food shopping.Buy Local

Their wisdom and my research has me shopping at no less than four and sometimes six different venues in order to stock my house. The first stop on my food-shopping trip is to the local organic farm. I’m fortunate in that I have an organic farm (Obercreek Farm) less than 4 miles away from my house. If my local farm doesn’t have what I want I then go to the weekly farmer’s market (Beacon Farmer’s Market). In addition to organic fruits and veggies at the farmer’s market, I stock up on pickled/fermented items.

If I’m missing items after visiting those two venues I then take a trip to the local health food store (Nature’s Pantry) to stock up on things like vitamins, organic coffee, essential oils and the like. For my paper products and bulk items such as vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, borax and washing soda I go to Wal Mart (if you’re keeping track, that’s four).

As far as meat goes, we order our beef, chicken and sometimes pork from local farmers, one of which is Movable Beast Farm. These farmers have a reputation of raising their animals humanely without anti-biotics or GMOs. These animals are allowed to roam freely and eat foods natural to their species.

Lastly, we purchase raw milk and eggs from yet another local farmer (Shunpike Dairy). This farm is a little further out of the way, but the trip to the farm is therapeutic. The scenery is beautiful no matter what the weather. This jaunt allows for a time of meditation and reflection (venue number six).

Doing Better because I Know Better

Why do I go to so many places in order to keep my house stocked with food and toiletries? Well, As Mr. Douglass said, “Knowledge makes a man unfit to be a slave.” I no longer want to be a slave to commercial advertising and the status quo. I don’t need Tide to make my laundry extra white or Crest to “build my enamel.” If you really need to build your enamel, here’s a link to help you do just that.

The cute advertising jingles and never-ending diet crazes have lost their effect on me. Through much reading, studying and researching, I no longer feel like a slave to Wall Street’s reductionist food advertising (who cares how many calories, grams of fat, or carbs a processed food has). I’ve learned too much about Monsanto and big agro’s less than reputable ways of infusing petrochemicals and other unsavory items into our foods and toiletries.Conformity

The more I learn, the more I alter my choices. As Ms. Angelou says, “When you know better you do better.” I know that blue dye #5 and “natural flavorings” are not good for me, so I do my best to avoid bringing them into my house. Does it make life more challenging? Well, I guess you can say so, but it also makes life much more interesting and rewarding. I’d rather give my money to local farmers than to large grocery food chains.

Following the food crowd is not for me. I’m a self-confessed non-conformist when it comes to food (and a growing non-conformist in other areas). My growing non conformist label brings to mind another quote from my mentor Mr. Douglass:

“I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, and to incur my own abhorrence.”

Are you being true to yourself?

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Category: Grocery, Shopping

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