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Fw: [permaculture] Local Food Challenge Announcement

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  • Graham Burnett
    ... From: Sharon Gordon To: Sent: Thursday, August 21, 2003 1:38 PM Subject: [permaculture] Local Food
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 21, 2003
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      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Sharon Gordon" <gordonse@...>
      To: <permaculture@...>
      Sent: Thursday, August 21, 2003 1:38 PM
      Subject: [permaculture] Local Food Challenge Announcement


      > I think this would be fun to do with fresh food from our gardens or food
      > from the gardens that we have dried, canned, or preserved.
      > ~Sharon
      > ****************************************************
      >
      > Want to find out how much of the food you eat is fresh, local, and
      harvested
      > at juicy ripeness or how much is travel weary from its trek across the
      > continent or around the earth? If so join the
      > **********************
      > *Local Food Challenge*
      > **********************
      > beginning Friday September 12, 2003 to Thursday September 18, 2003.
      >
      > ***The Challenge***
      > The Challenge is to discover how much food is grown near by, how much from
      > your region and how much from far away. This week in September can be one
      of
      > local abundance in most of the northern hemisphere with a full array of
      late
      > summer and early foods available. (In the southern hemisphere, there is
      > usually a good selection of early spring food.) Particularly for the
      > northern hemisphere, this provides a good look at whether you can eat a
      > complete well balanced diet from local foods, or if not where the holes
      are
      > in your local food security. In addition to knowledge gained,
      participants
      > get a chance to enjoy local foods at their peak of flavor.
      >
      > ***Why is Local Food Important?***
      > The closer the food grows to the diner, the fresher, riper and tastier it
      is
      > likely to be. When food is grown nearby, less fossil fuel(gasoline) is
      used
      > to deliver it resulting in less pollution. In general local food helps
      the
      > local economy through an increased number of local jobs and preservation
      of
      > green space. Other advantages may include: easier to find out how
      > organically it was grown, easier to find out if farm workers are treated
      > well and paid a living wage, increases local food security, fresher taste,
      > greater nutritional content, preserves local food specialties, access to
      > tastier heirloom varieties, preserve genetic diversity.
      >
      > ***To Participate***
      > Check to see where the foods that you eat this week are grown. Then
      measure
      > the amounts of each. We suggest that you weigh the foods since weight has
      a
      > big effect on the amount of fuel used when foods are transported. But if
      > you do not have scales, please feel free to measure in cups or by metric
      > volume. As long as you stick with one measurement method, you will be
      able
      > to evaluate your information.
      >
      > We request that you not measure any added tap/well water which you add to
      > your food, but if you use bottled water, please measure that. So for
      > instance if you make soup, weigh the dry beans, onions, tomatoes, carrots,
      > peppers, and spices, but not the water you use to cook them in.
      >
      > Then list the food and amount in one of the categories below. The
      > categories represent both degrees of freshness and amount of energy used
      for
      > transporting the food. For this challenge we have tried to choose
      > categories that represent significant differences in what is involved to
      get
      > the food to the diner. (If you have suggestions about the categories,
      please
      > send comments to gordonse@... with a heading of Local Food Categories
      or
      > post a message to the email list at LocalFoodCafe@yahoogroups.com .) Here
      > is a list of the categories and some of the reasoning behind the category.
      > Each category is likely to have a differing balance with regard to the
      > reasons under the heading above "Why is Local Food Important?", but we are
      > listing only a few of the aspects involved.
      >
      > Category--Reasoning for Category
      >
      > Homegrown Fresh (Food you(family) grew yourself. May include food grown
      at
      > an
      > earlier time which hasn't been processed beyond harvesting, washing, and
      > storing. Examples of food grown at an earlier time and stored are
      potatoes,
      > carrots in sand, cabbages, apples, winter squash)--Fresh, maximum
      nutrients,
      > generally the least nonrenewable energy to have this food. Maximum
      > possibilities for avoiding pollution of all sorts. Note: you may choose
      to
      > eat this food fresh or cooked and still consider it in this category.
      >
      > Homegrown Preserved (Dried, Canned, Frozen, Pickled, Fermented)--More
      energy
      > used. May or may not result in need for recycling or waste removal.
      >
      > Grown within SquareMile--A 15 to 20 minute walk for most people. This is
      > an amount of walking that many people are willing to do on a regular
      basis.
      > (See SquareMileLiving-subscribe@yahoogroups.com for more details on
      > calculating your SquareMile.)
      >
      > Grown within 3 miles-- An hour walk for most people. An easy bike ride in
      > terms of distance. Likely within public transportation if the area has
      > public transportation. People are less willing to walk this on a regular
      > basis, but it's quite doable for most if there in some sort of
      > transportation disruption.
      >
      > Grown within 50 miles--This is drivable in an hour in most places. It's
      > likely been picked within 24 hours of purchase. It is possible to get
      this
      > food by bicycle in most places if desired or necessary.
      >
      > Grown within 250 miles--This is half a day on a truck. It's likely to be
      at
      > least one to two days old by the time of arrival.
      >
      > Grown within 500 miles--A whole day on a truck. Lots of fossil fuel used,
      > but still could be fairly fresh.
      >
      > Grown within 1500 miles--Food is probably at least 3 to 5 days old. Food
      > has come from half a continent away.
      >
      > Grown within 3000 miles--Food is at least a week old and from across the
      > continent.
      >
      > Over 3000 miles--Food is probably 1 to 2 weeks old, or lots of fossil fuel
      > was used to fly it somewhere. Food may have come from across a continent
      or
      > the sea.
      >
      > ***Sara's Food Example***
      >
      > Homegrown Fresh: (18.35 pounds)
      > Tomatoes 3 pounds
      > Summer Squash 1 pound
      > Onions 1.5 pounds
      > Cucumbers 2 pounds
      > Peppers 1 pound
      > Green beans 1 pound
      > Turnip Greens 1.5 pounds
      > Plums 2 pounds
      > Grapes 2 pounds
      > Potatoes 4 pounds
      > Sunflower seeds .25 pounds
      > Basil .10 pound
      >
      > Homegrown Preserved (2 pounds)
      > Dry beans 2 pounds
      >
      > Grown within SquareMile (0 pounds)
      >
      > Grown within 3 miles (1.5 pounds)
      > Fish .5 pound
      > Eggs 1 pound
      >
      > Grown within 50 miles (0 pounds)
      >
      > Grown within 250 miles (0 pounds)
      >
      > Grown within 500 miles: (4 pounds)
      > Brown Rice 1 pound
      > White Flour 1.5 pounds
      > Wheat Flour .5 pounds
      > Peanut butter 1 pound
      >
      > Grown within 1500 miles (.5 pounds)
      > Vinegar .5 pound
      >
      > Grown within 3000 miles (0 pounds)
      >
      > Over 3000 miles (.90 pound)
      > Tea leaves .20 pound
      > Assorted spices .20 pound
      > Olive oil .5 pound
      >
      >
      > ***To Calculate Your Percentages for the week***
      > 1. Add up the total number of pounds of food you ate for the week. If you
      > used a digital scale this is straightforward. If you weighed in ounces,
      > remember that there are 16 ounces to a pound. If you used cups(and
      > tablespoons for partial cups--convert to cups) or metric volume add that.
      >
      > 2) Then for each category, make a fraction of
      > number of pounds(cups) in category/total pounds(cups)
      >
      > 3) Then divide and calculate percentage. Most computers have a calculator
      > program under Start/Programs/Accessories/Calculator.
      >
      > ***An Example from Sara's week:***
      > Total: 26.95 pounds
      >
      > Category/Fraction/Percentage(rounded (they total 101% due to rounding
      > error))
      > Homegrown Fresh: 18.35 pounds/26.95 pounds 68%
      >
      > Homegrown Preserved 2 pounds/26.95 pounds 7%
      >
      > Grown within SquareMile 0 pounds/26.95 pounds 0%
      >
      > Grown within 3 miles 1.5 pounds/26.95 pounds 6%
      >
      > Grown within 50 miles 0 pounds/26.95 pounds 0%
      >
      > Grown within 250 miles 0 pounds/26.95 pounds 0%
      >
      > Grown within 500 miles: 4 pounds/26.95 pounds 15%
      >
      > Grown within 1500 miles .5 pounds/26.95 pounds 2%
      >
      > Grown within 3000 miles 0 pounds/26.95 pounds 0%
      >
      > Over 3000 miles .90 pound/26.95 pounds 3%
      >
      > ***While participating or once you have your percentages***
      > Post discussion and/or percentages to the list you saw this challenge on
      > (Challenge may be posted to any appropriate lists--Food, Garden,
      > Agriculture, Food Security, Simplicity, Frugality, Recipes, Homestead,
      Local
      > Living, etc.) and to the LocalFoodCafe list which is sponsoring this
      > challenge ( LocalFoodCafe-subscribe@yahoogroups.com )
      >
      > ***Some aspects to consider while doing the challenge:***
      > Please feel free to discuss any of these on the lists if you like.
      > 1) How much of your food is grown within walking distance (3 miles or
      less)?
      > Sara's doing quite well for her example week with 81%.
      >
      > 2) Are there any important food categories where most of the food comes
      from
      > far away?
      > In Sara's case her grains come from far away.
      >
      > 3) If you altered your shopping to get as much local as possible, how did
      > this affect what you ate or the cost? Did you like the taste of any of
      the
      > items more(less) than usual?
      >
      > 4) What items that came from more than 3 miles away could be grown within
      > the 3 miles? Within 50 miles?
      >
      > 5) Did you discover any local fresh or value added foods or markets that
      you
      > hadn't tried before?
      >
      > 6) How much of your food did you eat fresh (without cooking)? Note: for
      the
      > sake of the functioning of your intestines, it's not wise to change this
      > from what you usually eat too much at one time.
      >
      > 7) If you have a nutrition program, did the weeks food meet your overall
      > nutritional needs? If anyone could run the numbers on Sara's week and
      send
      > them to gordonse@..., that would be helpful. My guess is that her
      > nutrient levels are probably good for most things, though I think her
      > calcium levels might be low.
      >
      > ***An email list for local food***
      > If you'd like to discuss local food topics as well as this challenge with
      a
      > group focused on this topic, join the LocalFoodCafe group.
      > LocalFoodCafe-subscribe@yahoogroups.com
      >
      > Info about the list:
      > LocalFoodCafe is for people who want to increase the percentage of local
      > food that they eat. It's also for people who want to help increase the
      > amount and types of food which are available locally. Related goals are to
      > improve taste of available food, health, sustainability, access to
      seasonal
      > food, ecology, food security, local economics, and to preserve regional
      ways
      > of eating.
      >
      > We are also interested in discovering the degree to which we and our area
      > can eat locally at the current time as well as the potential for
      increasing
      > the levels in the future. Occasionally we will sponsor Eating Local Food
      > Challenges.
      >
      > Some ways we might encourage the increased access to Local Food are: Home
      > Gardens, Community Gardens, Allotments, Farmer's Markets, CSAs, Restaurant
      > Gardens, Wildfoods, Biointensive Gardening, Permaculture, Edible
      > Landscaping, Small Local Farms, Square Mile Living, Four Season Harvest
      > techniques, SlowFood, Local Value-added food processing, Root Cellars and
      > Home Preserving, and Local/Regional Cookbooks.
      >
      > Bon (local) Appetit!
      >
      > Sharon
      > gordonse@...
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > _______________________________________________
      > permaculture mailing list
      > permaculture@...
      > http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/permaculture


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