It all starts out innocently enough. Wanting to eat less processed food. Making more things and eating at home. A few bee hives. A summer garden. Then the thirst comes. You want to read more....DO more! More homesteading, more farming, more gardening, more canning!! Next think you know.. you've smuggled in chickens and are stalking the farm section on Craig's list.
In my thirst I've started reading Barbara Kingsolver's book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (see side bar). For one year she and her family vowed they would only buy and eat food raised in their own neighborhood, grew it themselves or learned to live without it. I am still in the process of reading the book, but it has already got my wheels spinning.
I live here. Southwestern Pennsylvania.
Briefly and very quickly this morning I mapped out a few of the common items in our refrigerator and pantry. Honestly, I've never really looked a the labels before, except to check out the ingredients. In addition to our summer garden surplus, honey, and eggs our food came from here:
1. Bananas - Ecuador. Never noticed it on the Dole label before.
2. Scone Mix - A gift, but from Egham, Surrey.
3. Smoked Spanish Paprika - Also a gift (one I love) from Barcelona, Spain.
4. Coffee - Tony's Free Trade Organic.
Items of interest:
1. Starkist Tuna - Distributed by Starkist Seafood in Pittsburgh, PA. I am pretty sure there isn't any Tuna in the "Three Rivers."
2. Tomato - Grown in the USA from the local grocery (missed the farm market). Went to the web site, who didn't list WHERE the greenhouse was in the USA. Had to call the 1-800 number to find my $.82 tomato came from Texas. It was parked next to the local tomatoes at the store.
3. Life Cereal - One of my favorites and without high fructose corn syrup. Distributed by Quaker Oats, but made in Canada? Again, no info on the web..so.. 1-800-Quaker... It is made in Peterborough, Ontario.
If every US citizen ate just one meal a week (any meal) composed of locally and organically raised meats and produce, we would reduce our country's oil consumption by over 1.1 million barrels of oil every week.
Animal, Vegetable, Miracle.
On that note, I had an egg for breakfast.
Just food for thought...