World Benefits When Buying Local
Global warming, pollution, and dwindling fossil fuels will always be the conservational problems if nobody starts to buy local grown foods. Katherine Spriggs, author of the essay, “On Buying Local,” explains how having a large variety of foods at all times of the year is not worth the negative effects in the communities and their economies (Spriggs 92). As a community, many environmental challenges are being faced; Buying local will help bring advantages to not only the environment, but also the small towns and the overall economy.
From reducing environmental issues, reducing energy and oil use, to opening up new jobs in the communities, there are myriad of benefits that can come from a small change, like buying local produced products. “Buying local” is such a useful and efficient way of living in order to better the entire world as a whole. Global warming, pollution, and dwindling fossil fuel resources create harmful wastes that are causing many problems in the atmosphere.
Smaller farms would begin to have an advantage over larger farms across the country. The economically, efficient factors will start to increase. Spriggs clarifies that buying local can reverse the trend towards a positive farming outlook (Spriggs 94). The advantages of “buying local” outnumber the few downfalls by a landslide.
There will always be environmental issues that exist, but the small steps can be taken in order to reduce them. There is so much more to farming than just the crops that are produced. Taking a look at some of the negative effects of large farms, many of them can be reduced. Burning fossil fuels releases many dangerous green house gases, which is causing the global warming phenomenon. Spriggs elaborates in her essay that the United States manufactures more than 1.5 billion pounds of chemical pesticides a year which can pollute our water, soil, and air (Spriggs 93). However, agriculture is the central issue. While pesticides are being used to keep crops alive, a benefit to farmers, the natural ecosystem is not exactly experiencing the same effect; the ecosystem is being destroyed. An effective way agriculturists can improve on decreasing the amount of pesticides is to use continuous production, where it is reusing the fields, without wasting and hurting them. Another important environmental issue is the waste of energy and fuel used when transporting crops across the country. Semi trucks consume a large amount of fuel and give off a large amount of pollutants when driving long distances. Spriggs includes that interstate trucking is expensive both financially and ecologically (Spriggs 97). Buying locally would eliminate the waste of energy and fuel from driving city to city. The food is also handled more when having to be transported across the states. The less hands we have on our food, the cleaner it is.
Besides the environmental factors, another point would be that small farms benefit greatly when consumers buy locally grown foods. Small, locally owned farms
usually are more reliable and consumers are willing to pay a larger sum of money for the goods. The produce is usually fresher and comes from a smaller line of handling compared to that from larger farms. Small farmers focus their farming techniques on being sustainable, which includes reducing the use of chemicals and waste for their crops. This is because small farms tend to take care of their land and surroundings much more carefully than those for commercial use only. Spriggs implies that the small planters, who rotate their crops or use a field, alternatively for pasture and for crops, keep the land healthy (Spriggs 96). Because of the use of large amounts of chemicals at larger farms, the ground water also has a much larger chance of being contaminated. However, we can see how much more efficient it is to buy from small, local farms.
Many economically, efficient factors will begin to increase as well. Spriggs notes buying local has clear positive economic effects in local communities (Spriggs 98). When local farms start to take over, locally grown crops will be in higher demand. This higher demand will also lead to many job openings, which could help decrease the number of unemployed residents and will also keep the money within the community population. Some people may debate that large farms are cheaper, but not everyone knows exactly what has went into the food they are buying. Small farms would be trustworthy when it comes to unwanted additives. For example, the cattle from the small farms are getting their nutrition they need. These farmers are keeping watch on their cattle and spending more money to keep these cows healthy. The larger farms are different because they keep
track of the amount of beef the farmers will produce, not on the nourishment the cattle should be getting. The nourishment of the cows is important to the quality of the beef the cows produced. Small farms would provide quality, but larger farms would provide quantity. As Spriggs explains, buying local profits small farmers in multiple ways, especially by not forcing them to compete with larger farms across the country (Spriggs 95). Economically, people struggle to have jobs, but small farms can benefit from hiring them, and helping the economy out. Not only do the environmental and economical problems play an important role in choosing to “buy local,” there are also many ethical issues to consider. Spriggs acknowledges that buying locally should indeed save shipping costs (Spriggs 96). She is definitely right on her thought, not only because of the actual thousands of miles the transportation is traveling, but also the harmful effects that traveling could have on the products. The shipping system produces a large amount of oil and carbon dioxide, which is detrimental to the environment.
Not only is it harmful, it is costly throughout the countless journeys back and forth to obtain and deliver the foods. As Spriggs explains, a true commitment to buying locally would accommodate local season and climate. Some people will argue that local grown businesses cannot sell fruit and vegetables year around (Spriggs 96). After having strawberries yearly, some people do not buy them all the time from the grocery stores. “Buying local,” will definitely have restrictions on all of the food, but this would definitely be for the better. Spriggs agrees that if strawberries were sold only in the summer, they would be more special and we might even enjoy them more (Spriggs 99). This is true because as we all Voss 5
know, eating fresh food is tastier, and abstinence makes the heart grow fonder. Buying local is a simple change from which the world can benefit in many ways. Buying local is a choice that will have to be made my many people in each community. Friends, family, and even strangers must come together to make a change. When taking a look at the several opportunities, everyone can make a difference to better their surroundings in this ever-changing world.
Spriggs, Katherine. “On Buying Local.” Everyone’s An Author. Ed. Angela Lunsford, et al. New York: W.W. Norton, 2013. 92-100. Print.
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World Benefits When Buying Local. (2016, Jul 09). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/world-benefits-when-buying-local/