Could you eat local, seasonal food?
I think I’ve spent HOURS thinking about this week’s Change the World Wednesday challenge.
And I don’t mind admitting, the whole thing has made me feel a bit depressed.
The challenge reads “This week share ideas on eating locally during the winter months. While “eating locally” may include meats, dairy, etc., for the purposes of this challenge we’re primarily talking about plant-based foods.
And then …
Come up with a plan, for your household, to eat locally throughout the year. This might include preserving produce which is currently available in your area, talking to farmers to see if they offer (or would be willing to offer) items during the winter, or growing a winter garden of your own.”
It bought it home to me that I’ve lost yet another year of produce in the garden. Of course I could blame it on the weather (the wettest for 100 years I believe) and the fact that having clay soil means it’s been waterlogged and I’ve not been able to get out there. Plus working full time means I don’t have time, but in all honesty – it’s a bit lame isn’t it?
What if my family depended on that food? What if ‘life as we know it’ stopped tomorrow and there were no more shops and online ordering? What if there was no more fuel so even if there WERE shops you couldn’t get to them anyway?
And what about my grand plan at the beginning of 2012 that this would be the year I would harvest something every single month from the garden?
And then I panicked. Even if I knew what to do, what exactly would we eat for this challenge? The thought of eating leeks and cabbage from the garden for three months doesn’t fill me with excitement. And then I felt guilty! Because there are many people across the world who would be GRATEFUL for that, hey, even my Grandparents might have worshipped a plate of cabbage and leek at some point in their lives.
So I’m still stuck in overwhelm and sadness about the state of our cultural expectations. It’s made me realise how dependent I am on the system. Sure I can cook with wood, get hot water and have some lighting with no electricity, but it’s not very good being able to cook if I have nothing to cook! It’s made me realise how stuck in a rut of habitual shopping I am – we buy virtually the same foods every week. It’s made me realise how spoilt I am – if the shop doesn’t have what I want I complain like a petulant child! Oh my!
As you’ve probably gathered by now, I tend to be a ‘pick yourself up and focus on the solution’ kinda gal so I’m treating myself gently with this one. I’m going to give myself permission to feel bad for a couple more days then I’ll demand action of myself. Actions towards not feeling like this in a year’s time.
What can I do? Start studying a couple of websites I’ve found, dig out the two beds of weeds I currently have in the garden and maybe even sow a couple of herbs indoors, just to keep my fingers in the soil.
What about you – do you grow much of your own food and in reality how long could you feed yourself and your family for?
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