Many Locally Sourced Foods Are Not Local

August 5, 2019

© Olivier Le Moal/Getty Images

Common wisdom dictates that when you are shopping for food at the grocery store and farmers market that when something labeled "local" that it indeed sourced from the area you are purchasing from.  In fact, we're willing to spend a bit more money on products in the belief that the purchases help local farmers and for a fresher and higher quality product. However there is a little known fact about the term "local" when it describes food and beverages. The term ‘local’ on food packaging hasn’t been officially defined by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Add to this confusion the federal 2008 Farm Bill defined it as a food can be marketed as local less than 400 miles from its origin. So those tomatoes you buy at the local farmer's market could have been grown in Charleston, South Carolina or local blueberries at a grocery store could be from Pascagoula, Mississippi. If you’re buying produce at your local supermarket, ask a staff member to identify the farm where the produce is grown. If you’re at a local food market, ask the seller. If you’re eating out you, you may be out of luck. There is still no way to tell if food advertised on restaurant menus as “local” actually is local.

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SOURCE: Moneyish

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