Why is it better to buy local?

Could Hawai’i survive on what we grow locally? The reason I choose this topic is because just by taking this small step towards sustainability we are saving money, fuel, and the environment. It is a great idea because you can grow almost anything in Hawaii. By growing, and buying locally we are helping our local farmers make money, saving fuel that would have been used to ship the products from the mainland to Hawaii, and by saving the money and fuel to ship the products we are helping the environment by helping reduce the green house gasses being released into the air. Also, locally grown food is less likely to have been used preservatives because there is less of a trip from the farm to you home.
Why Buy local? Did you know that 90% of our food comes for off this island? There are so many reasons for buying local but some people may disagree. Buying local is not as easy as it sounds. You would have to shop harder to find locally grown foods, and in America many people are always looking for the fast and easy way to do things. Many people don't have the time to take looking for locally grown foods therefore don't bother to buy locally no matter what the benefits are. We live in Paradise, we could be a sustainable state, because we can grow almost anything in Hawaii. But most people don't, because they want the quick and easy way to do things. People in America don't see how much less of an impact we could make by just buying locally.


Mrs. Y's Comments

Amanda- This is a good start. I like your first question 'Could Hawaii survive...?' This is a critical question (I've heard our supplies would only last for 5 days. Then what would we do?). It seems you could go a bit further before you state your next point 'the reason..." For an Intro, it seems you could explain the initial question "why is it better to buy local?" Who says it's better? Why are we hearing more and more about this (have you heard the term 'localvores'?)? Also, your intro makes it seem like this is such a 'no brainer'-in buying local we'd support our economy, we'd save fuel, etc....So why might this be difficult? Seems you should share some of this complexity here, to show why this is important to delve into further.

A Localvore is a person committed to eating and learning about food grown within their food shed. Some of the positive reasons to be a localvore is there are less resources used, meaning fossil fuels, packaging, etc. It supports local economy, such as local farmers and keep more money within the community. Local foods are healthier because there is less processing and less preservatives since there is a shorter trip from the farm to your home. The foods are more "honest" because we are all neighbors and there is an honest producing process and organic means of growing. It is also safer because it is less likely to give you food born illness. If anything at all, it just tastes better.
Why eat local? Eating local creates less pollution meaning less catastrophic global climate change, fewer fossil fuels meaning a more positively impacting health and environment.
"100 Mile Diet" In Vermont there are people trying a new thing called the "100 Mile Diet." 1 month eating only food grown within 100 miles from their homes. The food is gathered form farmers markets which is less of a contribution to global warming. Less fossil fuel and packaging. When you are getting food from father places more of the money goes to the middleman rather than the farmer that grows the foods. Every minute two acres of farm land are lost to development - farmland trust. Natural food stores and local food cooperatives make a point of "highlight" local foods.
"Community Supported Agriculture" programs, which let consumers buy a share of a farmer's yield." Although it is such a good idea to be a localvore it is harder than it seems. You have to take more time to find the "locally grown foods" and you also have to give up things that you like such as frozen pizza's, processes foods, chocolate, tea, and coffee. Some ingredients used in making bread is also imported from other palces.

Local foods can sometimes consume more energy. It can produce more greenhouse gases because one big shipments is more efficient than a lot of little trips. Big shipments are pound for pound while little trips back and forth is a lot less efficient.
"All things being equal, it's better if food only travels 10 miles," says Peter Tyedmers, an ecological economist at Nova Scotia's Dalhousie University. "Sometimes all things are equal; many times they aren't." Life Cycle Assessment is Count of all resources from the fertilizer used to grown the foods to the fuel used to ship it. Also the Concrete and steel used to create a packing plant and Electricity to keep it cool. The question is what's more efficient More car trips with smaller loads or bigger loads with lower amount of car trips. The efficiency can also depend on the season. Cows are also adding to global warming due to the methan gas in their burps.
In Vermont, for example, if we could replace just 10% of the foods we eat with local products, we’d create over 3,600 jobs, and add $376 million to the local economy. Buying local gives fresher foods, and helps remind people where their food comes from. It helps them to be grateful for what they have. It might mean shopping a little harder to find locally grown foods, but isn't it worth it? It will be a lot more expensive to buy locally grown foods than buying mass imported foods. Certain seasons give problems to growing certain foods. There are certain things such as chocolate, coffee, and tea that some people can't give up. The solution is that make good choices on what you want to keep.

Hawaii Farmers Markets:


Being a localvore is harder than it seems. You have to be more specific about what you eat and what you buy. Maybe the solution is that be not exclusively local, but mostly local, and what you absolutely need to buy what is you have stocked in your pantry.
Here is an example of a family who has taken the localvore way, and incorporated it into their own business, and life.They incorporated it into their business by Farming beef on their ranch, and supporting the localvore way.



Eleanor Nakama-Mitsunaga
Hawaii Farm Breauru

1. Why is it important to eat/buy local?
The Hawaii Farm Breauru believes that supporting local farmers are important. The food is also fresher.
2. Why is it so difficult to eat/buy locally? (General)
Most people say it is more expensive and harder to find locally grown foods. There are always local farmers markets that vendors set up to sell their products and everything there is local products. You could also ask your local supermarket which products are local, and if they could sell more locally grown products.
3. Why is it so difficult to eat/buy locally for Hawaii?
Because we are so isolated it is harder for people to believe that buying locally is possible,because everyday we have to ship things from the mainland.
4. Do you think there has been progress within the last 5 years? There has been lots of progress within the last 5 years. The main reasons why we started the farmers markets to bring the farmers directly to the public so that they could talk directly to the farmers and build a relationship with them. It is also to help the consumers understand what the farmers have to go through such as "rain storms" and why there are no Customers buy directly from the farmers know exactly how their food is grown. By making these farmers markets people are making a cautious effort. The biggest thing about buying and growing locally is awareness.
Yes, by just educating the public we have defiantly made progress within the last 5 years.
5. What made you decide to get into this movement?
I believe in the same ideals. I beleive in supporting local business, the Hawaii farm brureau, and the Department of Agriculture. The products are also fresher, are top notch, and great quality. I beleive in the support that it brings, and hope that others including the customer base will see that. It helps business all around keeps money in the isalnds.
I believe in support our local community.
6. Why do you believe it is important?
Supporting our local economy and the local farmers. It also taste better, it is a lot fresher than fruits imported from the mainland.
7. What is the mission of your organization (what is your hopes for this organization)?
Give knowledge and supporting local farmers.
8. What is your opinion on Hawaii joining this movement?
Some things that aren't grown here, like apples.Everyone needs things that aren't grown locally and you have to buy it from where it is, but the idea is to make a cautious effort to support our local economy.
9. What can I do to help with this movement? The main thing you could do weather you are a high school student, parent, adult, senior citizenelementary student, grandma, grandpa, or parent is knowledge. This mission is to get people involved and to share information. More educated about the products your buying. Making a cautious effort. Somet things aren't grown int he islands. Apples purchse. fruits lettuce can be bought locally cautiously purchase local ask supermarket to carry more local products. talk to farmers directly. farmers markets. helps the who buy local process.
10. Are there any events in which people can go to, to learn more about it?
The Hawaii Farm Bureau hold Farmers markets on The Biig Island and Oahu on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Yearly hawaii state farm fairs are also held yearly. These events are all based on buying local and helping local farmers. Participting in local events always help.

Comments from Ms. Y Amanda-I like the revisions to your Intro paragraph. This sets the stage for learning much more as you have noted that this can be challenging, even though it sounds so good.You have found great articles that discuss many sides to this issue. Your interview questions are also good. I'm glad you were able to contact someone to answer your questions. Now can you add a picture and soundclips from your conversation? Also, for your Action Plan, perhaps you can consider the "100-mile diet" ?(just a thought).

Action Plan:

I have learned a lot about the topic of being a local-vore. From research and interviewing Elenor Nakama-Mitsunaga. This researched showed me that small things like buying locally can actually help the environment and also our community. My action plan is to bring awareness to people within my community. Share the knowledge that i have learned by making a flier and sharing it with all my friends and family I would also to take on the "100-mile diet" I will try to buy and eat locally grown food to support the local farmers. This might be difficult because our school food is bought in bulk from the mainland because it is cheaper and not many local farms can supply a large school like ours with enough foods. It is also a hard time within economics so, buying local foods might be harder because money is crucial and with a tuition this high, money is a big issue. I will inform my parents, friends, and acquaintances about this movement, and hopefully strike up some interest within some people, for them to take action also. The biggest thing i can do is to make people aware of what they can do by taking this little step, it is up to them to make the change for a sustainable, healthy, delicious future!

Learn More About the 100-mile Diet at:


Final Comments:
Amanda- Overall you have done a nice job with your project. It seems you have gained new understandings from when you first started this project. Your layout and graphic choices on your wiki add interest and make one want to know more. I still had a few questions about your Action Plan: 1) You said you will also try the 100 mile diet. Did you end up doing this? If not, you could comment on why not (too difficult? expensive? you don't do the shopping?) If you did do this, then it would have been good to reflect on how it went (was it difficult? do you think most people here could do this as well? what did you have to do without?). Also, I was wondering about the flier you ended up with. It seems to me (and I could be wrong) that you ran out of time? Again, as a flier it is good to stick with one page. That way someone can post it on the wall (you don't usually see posters with a page 2 stapled to the back). Perhaps you didn't intend for it to be a poster so my last suggestion isn't relevant. But even as a flier/handout, people don't often want to read that much (so one page is a good guideline to stick to in many different instances, especially when you are giving something that someone has not asked for). As for the content, you did provide relevant information, such as defining a new term for them (localvore), giving reasons for why one should shop locally, and also giving them the hours of local farmer markets. Last thought- I hope you go to a Farmer's Market. The KCC one is fun with tons of great food! Well done.