While we know that buying and eating local is more environmentally sustainable and supports the local economy, many don’t realize that locally grown produce is actually often better for you, health-wise.
Most non-local, imported produce is picked before it is fully ripe, just so it can last the long journey it travels to get to you. Picking a fruit/vegetable before ripeness doesn’t allow it to reach its maximum nutrient levels. On top of that, once it’s picked, it begins to lose vitamins and nutrients, and continues to lose them all the way to your grocery store. Your average carrot has traveled over 1800 miles to reach your plate, losing nutritional value every step of the way.
Local produce is usually picked at the peak of ripeness, ensuring it reaches the highest nutrient level it can attain. It also reaches your plate within a much shorter time period, so that a much higher level of vitamins and nutrients are retained.
Researchers from Montclair State University found that locally grown broccoli retained twice as much Vitamin C as one that was shipped from overseas.
Want to start buying locally but not sure how to do it? Check out Eco Local Markets!