Sunday, September 13, 2009

Eat Local? Just a minute ...

The 100 mile diet has been talked and written about a lot lately. I've read the book and basically agree with the main premise - buying your food locally is better for local farmers and the environment. And as much as I would like to follow the diet completely, there are some fairly major problems.
First problem is that this is 2009 and I live in northern Nova Scotia. Nobody grows any rice, wheat, grain, oat, nut, tea (I'm talking real tea and not herbal tisanes), coffee, orange or lemon within 100 miles of me. In fact, I'm pretty sure none of these foods are grown anywhere in the province, if even in Atlantic Canada. Yes, there are processors and those who roast the beans and get these foods ready for consumers but no one actually grows any of these products for thousands of miles from here. I can't really imagine getting along without bread, pasta, muffins (although I could easily give up certain of these foods just not ALL carbohydrates), rice, orange juice, lemon anything and of course, coffee, tea and chocolate. Back 200 years ago, grain crops were probably grown here but with limited success so they're not grown here now. This area of Canada has always imported many of its foodstuffs and I can't really see that changing anytime soon. I am wondering if the buy local challenge may inspire someone to start growing grains in Nova Scotia - if they do, I'll certainly give it a try. People who live in central and western Canada do have more access to locally grown grain products.
Now the grapefruit juice, tea, chocolate and coffee could be more of a problem - it has to do with a four month growing season ...


  1. I know the company is not from NS but there is a company in noth western NB that sells local organic grains including popcorn. You should be able to buy it @ one of your local grocry stores. ( for the life of me I can't remember their name but they do make excellent buck wheat panckae mix!). Hope that helps you out a little bit!

  2. The company is called Speerville, I think, but it still wouldn't fall under the provisions of the 100-mile diet. If it's in New Brunswick, it's a minimum of a four hour drive from where I'm at, so it's at least 250 miles away from here, and probably more. I just find it amazing that there's no one in Nova Scotia growing grain products. I may try the Speerville products though - only one Sobeys store sells them around here.