So what is The Locavore?
For the last two and a half years, I've been living and working on an organic farm in Canada, with most of the food I ate coming from the farm where I lived. Along with many other hands, I built beds, weeded and thinned the carrots, milked the cow and cared for the variety of animals on the farm. During this time I developed a deep connection with my food, and felt comfortable in knowing where it came from and how it was produced.
When I moved back to Bristol, I yearned for that connection once more. But how do you do that in the city? So I started looking at what was available in the local area, and was surprised by the variety of produce available both within the city limits, but also in the surrounding countryside. But as I bought this produce from local stores, I realised I still knew nothing about who was making it and how.
So I decided to start a project with the aim of getting out and meeting the people who produce food in the region. The farmers who grow my daily vegetables, raise the meat I eat from time to time, make the cheese I love, and bake the bread I can't seem to live without. For me, it's about forming that connection with each producer and telling their story. Thus The Locavore was born.
It's not about only eating local food; there's wonderful food and inspiration in our global community that I want to continue to celebrate and enjoy. It's more about considering each item and whether it's available somewhere in my local region. For me, it's not just about reducing food miles, it's also considering the impact it has by keeping money within the local region. I've farmed myself and can appreciate the challenge they often face in competing with conventional or imported produce that is available cheaper, and want to support the farmers who work so hard to grow or produce this food.
This is a personal journey for me, but one I want to share with others. I don't expect other people to spend their lives travelling out to farms and hunting down producers. I respect that everyone has a different set of values when it comes to the food they eat, and don't expect you to always agree with mine. But I hope The Locavore inspires people to think about where their food comes from, and realise there's a face and a story behind everything you eat.