Natacha and Josh eat local to test their self reliance
By Natacha Lee, Gisborne
They are Kiwis eating food grown and produced within a 200 km radius for 30 days of April in the Happyzine Eat Local Challenge.
The past few years Josh and I have been thinking long and hard about the holistic implications of self reliance. We knew finding land was the first step to the low impact sustainable lifestyle we aspire to. Moving on our own little piece of land in September last year we felt like we were one step closer to our goal.
Six months down the track, how much have we achieved? Well, we still have a never ending “to do” list, but we do feel like we are getting somewhere. When I received an email from Ooooby (an awesome local food exchange forum) promoting a challenge to source all of our food from a 200km radius for a month I didn’t hit the reply button straight away but I gave it some serious thought.
Surely we could do this… or could we? We are still very far from our self reliance goal but then, why not give this a go and see how we perform? April is definitely not the ideal month, since we dried our milking cow off and the garden is in transition mode (ripping summer crops out and planting our winter ones), but in the end I decided it would be a good test.
Gisborne is slightly off the beaten track but we do have access to some nice fresh produce, our garden has been supplying us with most of our vegetable needs over the summer and we have animals to provide us with meat. The downside is our dairy consumption: we get raw milk from a farm near Waipukurau (phew, just within the 20km zone), but our organic butter and cheese most probably comes from further afield. Luckily there is a local cheese factory and they have their own herd. Being french, I can’t live without cheese for long.
Since doing the GAPS diet last year, I have limited my grains/ carbs intake, but having the option I decided to go for wheat, which means I can still eat our homemade sourdough bread and occasionally make pasta, pastry, tortilla.
We tend to cook most of our meals from scrap and don’t eat much packaged food, and very seldom eat sugar… that should help ease some big food mile temptations!