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The Challenges of Buying Local Food
An NPR story aired this morning about the town of Hardwick, VT, which is deep into the local food movement. There are lots of organic farms, a farmers market, a food co-op, and a restaurant that serves food from the area.
Fresh mustard greens for sale at the Abingdon Farmers Market in Abingdon, VA
But there's one big issue in the local food movement, said Derek Demers, a senior at Hazel Union, Hardwick's local high school. And that issue is affordability. It's a point that has surfaced in other corners of the United States (as this story from Missouri by Harvest Public Media shows).
"There's the side of the town that's for the local food movement, but I think there's an even greater side of the town, with more people, that can't afford the local food," said Demers. "I work at our local supermarket grocery store, and I see most of the people in town there."
As the NPR story states, some local farmers are becoming more efficient so their produce will be less expensive. Some farmers markets are accepting SNAP, formerly known as food stamps, and WIC and then doubling their value. What is your local community doing to make fresh, local food more accessible to low-income consumers?
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