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  • Writer's picturerebeccaecarpenter

The 2014 Locavore Index

Among the growing trends in food these days is the desire to eat locally-grown food, also known as locavorism.  Locavores choose to eat locally for a variety of reasons, including lessening the impact on the environment, supporting small farms, boosting the local economy, and improving the taste and nutritional value of the food they consume.

“Locally-grown” is loosely defined as food grown within a 100-mile radius of where it’s consumed.  The concept originated in northern California decades ago, and is often credited to Alice Waters, who has been a leader in the local, organic and sustainable food movement for almost forty years.

For the past three years, Strolling of the Heifers, a Vermont-based local food advocacy group, has ranked US states on their commitment to local foods.  By compiling the Locavore Index, they “hope to strengthen local farms and food systems by encouraging efforts across the country to increase the use of local foods in homes, restaurants, schools and institutions.”   The index is based on four metrics:  1) Farmers’ markets, 2) CSAs (community supported agriculture), 3) Farm-to-School programs, and 4) Food hubs.

The DC region fared well in the index, with Maryland coming in at 15 and DC at 17.  Virginia was ranked slightly lower, at 24, which is somewhat surprising, given all the farms in our state.  The good news, however, is that Virginia is on a positive trend — rising from #28 in 2013 and #34 in 2012.  So we’re heading in the right direction!

Here’s the full 2014 Index:

We at Sprout love the idea of local food at Sprout love the idea of local food, and as we always say, it doesn’t get any more local than your own backyard!

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