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Home » Eat Local challenge

Why eating local means supermarket visits are easy (for Hayley)

Submitted by on April 15, 2015 – 5:03 am
By Hayley Gale, Pohara, Golden Bay
Hayley and Steve at the Sandcastle, Pohara, Golden Bay.

Hayley and Steve at the Sandcastle, Pohara, Golden Bay.

Hayley and her partner Steve are Kiwis eating food grown and produced within a 200 km radius for 30 days of April in the Happyzine Eat Local Challenge.

Supermarket shopping has never been easier since taking up the Eat Local Challenge just over a week ago. Instead of struggling  with a big trolley, I weave between my fellow shoppers carrying a small basket, then breeze through the isles to the small queue at the ‘maximum 12 items’ counter.

The only items in the basket – all non local – are dog food, cat food, toothpaste and dishwash liquid. The  few local food items in the supermarket are ones we already have in our organic garden, or can easily obtain from a local vegie stall at this time of year.

To supplement our ample garden produce I visit a fruit and vegetable stall at Bay Subtropicals (5km away), the Takaka Village market(10km from home) and Village Milk(a raw milk stall at a Motupipi farm 3km up the road). This month-long challenge has made us realise just how lucky we are to live in Golden Bay.

We’re settling in to the new routine pretty well. Breakfasts are usually fruit salad comprising apples, blueberries and bottled plums(all from our garden)  or pancakes made from local milk and eggs.

We have chosen wheat as our permitted grain and bought a 25kg sack of organic wheat grown in Canterbury. Grinding two cups of grain into flour with our bench top stone grinder  to make the daily bread is a bit of a workout each morning. If I’m disorganised and get up too late I buy delicious wholemeal bread from our local baker at Takaka Infusion.

Not only have we managed without foods with a high food-miles tag such as sugar, chocolate and butter, we’re feeling better for it. Now I’ve tasted fresh, local,olive oil I will never spread margarine on bread again.

One difficulty I  hadn’t anticipated has been sourcing local meat. We already have our own lamb but when I posted an innocent request on Facebook’s Takaka Noticeboard asking about local beef or pork for sale,  the replies informed me it was illegal to buy or sell local meat! I had absolutely no idea that was the case.

We are, however, eating vegetarian food most of the time, but over the next week I plan to source some locally caught seafood.Hopefully it’s not against the law to collect mussels off the rocks!

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