The EAT Vision
As Residents of North Central Washington, we want to eat fresh, wholesome food now and in the future. We want this food to be locally grown in healthy soil on successful family farms by our friends and neighbors so that no one goes hungry. Our food should be grown with responsible stewardship, promoting thriving markets, agrarian culture and community.
NCW Local Food Photos
The Edible Schoolyard at John Newbery Elementary in Wenatchee had its ground-breaking on Earth Day in 2006. Thanks to sponsorship by the Newbery PTA and Heifer International, EAT and other community partners were able to remove the old soil and bring in clean soil to raise the garden at least two feet in a functional two-tiered terrace. Find out more »
Why EAT Local?
This can be done by growing your own food and sharing with family, friends and food banks; shopping at farmers markets and on-farm stands where you can strike up a conversation with the person who grows your food; joining a CSA (community supported agriculture) where you pay early in the season to receive weekly shares of the local harvest; participating in a community garden or edible schoolyard and teaching or learning about growing food with others; farm-to-table initiatives where school food services, restaurants, and cafeterias source locally grown foods and are encouraged to do this by community members.
Help strengthen our local food security by supporting a healthy, affordable, stable food supply under local control rather than geared to the needs of international markets. If we rely on a long-distance food chain importing foods from places with lower land and labor costs, then we increase the vulnerability of contamination or disruption within that food chain. Eating locally and improving community food security helps ensure that we can feed ourselves.
Help the environment by cutting down on excess transportation and ‘food miles’. On average, food travels 1500 miles to reach your plate, so shortening that average by eating more local foods grown sustainably will reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Eating locally can help preserve open space in your community by retaining farms instead of pavement. With rising fuel costs, the price of globally sourced foods is likely to increase as those transportation costs will be passed on to the consumer.
You can get locally grown foods at the peak of freshness, nutritional value (since nutrients diminish over time) and flavor. Ripe, fresh fruits and vegetables taste better, so make it easier to eat more of them. Compare this with produce, for example, that is picked early and unripe for long-distance transport and longer shelf life. When we eat locally, we can learn about eating seasonally and the variety of fruits and vegetables available at different times of the year which might help us diversify our diets by trying new or unfamiliar foods.
Eating locally helps you put your money where your mouth is. Your food dollar goes to local growers and they can continue to farm here, providing food for local markets, bakeries and butchers. This creates “sticky money” that recirculates through our local economy. 99% of respondents to our local food survey said that having local farms and agriculture was important.