No Impact Week Day 4: Local Foods Only, Please

22 10 2009

In contrast to the transportation challenge, eating local is easy for us. We live in an agricultural community, and we’ve been CSA members for 11 years, across two states. Most of our diet is local anyway, but we *tried* to eat exclusively local today. We weren’t perfectly successful, but I think we came close.

For breakfast, we ate homemade No Knead Bread made with Sir Galahad King Arthur Flour, toasted, with Franklin Heyburn’s Vermont honey. Now, I think of King Arthur Flour as being local because the employee-owned company is headquartered in Norwich, VT, which is about 10 minutes away from my house. However, looking closely at their website, I see that at least their home-use flour is made from hard red winter wheat grown in Kansas. We don’t use the home use flour — we buy our flour in 50 pound bakery bags, and unless we’re feeling flush enough to buy the organic, we usually buy their Sir Galahad variety (it’s the cheapest — about 40 cents a pound). But it’s all hard red winter wheat, which I gather isn’t grown around here. Well, I don’t feel bad. King Arthur Flour is good stuff. If you call KAF flour local, the only non-local part of breakfast was my tea and the salt in my bread. (I should have skipped the tea, but I forgot.) And the salt may have been local — I see there are salt manufacturers in Portsmouth NH.

For lunch, I had what I always have — leftovers, consumed at my desk. In this case, it was a salad made with lettuce and carrots from Cedar Circle Farm, our CSA, croutons made from homemade bread sauteed in Cabot butter, local eggs, and a salad dressing made from local yogurt,the aforementioned honey, local maple syrup, and other (non-local) ingredients. The non-local components of the salad included mustard and milk (originally powdered) in the salad dressing, ginger chips and raisins in the salad. Then in addition to the salad, I had a Cedar Circle Farm butternut squash roasted with a filling made out of more homemade bread, local goat cheese, farm garlic, and (non local) olive oil and nutmeg.

Dinner was homemade bread again and squash soup made with Cedar Circle squash, local potatoes, farm carrots and turnips, and organic but non-local frozen corn, as well as non-local spices. My husband drank local beer, but my son and I had non-local tea sweetened with homemade grenadine made out of non-local Pom juice and non-local sugar.

I tried to use the carbon diet calculator, but it doesn’t account for the locality or organicness of the ingredients, nor does it have everything, so I have no idea what the numbers mean. Still, I think we did OK, which maybe offsets how much we suck at the transportation issue. I again did not arise early enough to catch my morning bus, and after work, I went to my son’s school open house. My husband picked me up for that, since they had to drive anyway, and his school is about a mile from my work. I offered to walk, but my husband said he was out burning up the atmosphere anyway.

Trash wise I did fine — I think the only trash I generated today was my dental floss. And I haven’t purchased anything since the week began except a cheap hotel room in DC, after my couchsurfing request didn’t work out. I would like to have stayed at a green hotel, like the Kimpton chain, but I couldn’t justify the expense. Tomorrow is energy day. I have no idea how that will go.




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