We had the pleasure of getting a tour of one of our local farms today! Matt, owner and master farmer at Black Creek Farms in Mechanicsville Virginia, took a brief break away from managing his farm to show us around, and what a gift it truly was!
When we start to discuss ways to improve our health, decreasing processed foods and increasing fresh vegetables is always at the top of the list.
The question as to why we would want to eat more locally sourced foods has been coming up, and the answer is simple: LOCAL FOODS HAVE MORE NUTRIENTS. Most all produce in your grocery store comes shipped from different cities, states or countries. In order for these foods to not spoil prior to arriving to the grocery store, they must be harvested before they are "matured" and ready to eat. This ultimately decreases the amount of nutrition these food products have.
So to answer the question, "Why should I buy a local vegetable when I can buy the same food from the grocery store for a cheaper price?" The answer would be you are NOT getting the same food from the grocery store (when you compare nutritional values). When choosing local you are getting the FULL nutrition from your food as it was grown to it's true harvest date which optimized the nutrients it was able to pull from the soil. Not to mention with this comes an added bonus of the food tasting substantially better and sweeter as well :D I can attest to this, after eating local tomatoes I never want to go back!
This is NOT to discredit your local grocery store or the power of their vegetables, it is simply to say, local has EVEN MORE than what you are getting from your grocery store. Is it necessary? No. Does a benefit exist? Absolutely!
Why Black Creek Farms? What we had the pleasure of observing and learning about at Black Creek Farms is the power of natural fertilization, managing soil nutrients, utilizing naturally sourced spring water, how to manage pests (bugs eating your plants) without sacrificing the quality of foods with pesticides, crop rotation and MORE! Although many of these aspects of farming are not necessary to produce a harvest and they undoubtedly add a substantial additional time commitment from the farmers, they speak to the true quality of the resulting produce, and the commitment your farmer is making to produce something truly valuable. Shout out to Black Creek because when it comes to their organic nutrition content of the soil their produce grows in, they are nationally ranked!
To learn more about Black Creek Farm check out their Facebook page HERE, and their Blog HERE.