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Home » Eat Local challenge

A few rare eggs adds 25000 km of food miles to her meal

Submitted by on April 16, 2015 – 7:06 pm
Natacha Lee, Gisborne

Natacha Lee, Gisborne

By Natacha Lee, Gisborne 

Kiwis eating food grown and produced within a 200 km radius for 30 days of April in theHappyzine Eat Local Challenge.

Well, the chocolate was always going to be my downfall. We were having lunch at some friends’ place, I did really well sticking to only eating local, until the chocolate came out…

I had a few little eggs and just like that I added about 25000km of food miles to my meal.

The cacao beans and butter came from West Africa, the chocolate was possibly processed in Belgium (although it could also be processed in Australia, I’ll have to check the packet). Either way, exotic ingredients like cacao, banana, sugar, quinoa, chia, and many other readily available ingredients on our supermarket shelves are a heavy investment.

We usually keep these items in the luxury column of our shopping list. I stopped buying bananas two years ago (to the great despair of our kids), not only because they travel so far, but also because the way most of them are farmed (unless organic or fair trade) is very detrimental for the workers (most toxic pesticide use causing birth defects and illness, low wages, etc) and because any “living” food coming into New Zealand is irradiated (they kill it basically. What does dead food bring you? Nothing). The same goes for chocolate, if I am going to buy some, it has to be fair trade. It’s more expensive for sure, but in my opinion that’s the way it should be, it’s a luxury item.

A century ago, very few families could afford to buy sugar, as a consequence, they didn’t consume as much. And rightly so. Sugar was then nicknamed “the white death”. Whenever I got sick as a child, the first thing my mother would say was “stop eating sugar”. It not only makes you fat, it also inhibits your intake of essential vitamins and minerals and depresses your immune system. It’s a drug and it’s dangerous.

When I went off sugar 4 years ago I was surprised to realise how much I was actually eating a day without noticing: a teaspoon of honey in my tea, a couple pieces of fruit, a muffin while having tea with friends… it all adds up. Nowadays, most of us eat sugar in one shape or other everyday (to your body, carbs are sugar as well, they are processed the same way).

In our family these items have become occasional treats, and when we do get them, they taste so nice! (I did enjoy those 3 little chocolate eggs very much)

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