Tuesday, June 30

Finding it all in the neighborhood: My first dilemma now that we've moved into the new apt!

I read the Omnivores Dilemma about a year and a half ago. I thought it was a really interesting account of the way food policies have shaped eating in the US..in ways that most people don’t realize or consider. Since then I’ve tried to buy most of our produce from local sources (farmers market, co op grocery stores etc). I also buy local free-range eggs, and free-range meat/seafood when possible.

Now that we’ve moved to a new apt, I’m faced with a little bit of a dilemma. There is a Trader Joe’s visible from our living room window, plus several Middle Eastern bakeries, at least 2 Yemeni restaurants, a Lebanese restaurant and several specialty grocery stores. I love supporting local businesses (OK, TJ’s is not a local business..but everything else on the list definitely counts!), but supporting nearby stores/restaurants does not necessarily mean I’m buying local goods.

The Middle Eastern bakeries and grocery stores are definitely shipping products internationally, which kind of defeats the purpose of using produce and food items that are both healthy and eco-friendly. If you buy fruit from your area, it doesn’t take nearly as much gas/oil etc to transport it to the store or market. So buying specialty dates also means overlooking the fact that they’ve been shipped @ great environmental cost half-way around the world.

I don’t think I’m ready to pull a Barbara Kingsolver (re Animal, Vegetable, Miracle) but I wish I could resolve this dilemma. I’d settle for partially resolving the dilemma. Or finding some type of compromise! Or just not feeling bad either way!


Anonymous said...

Regardless, Ben must consume tons of calories...