Why Buy Local Farm Products
The reasons to make local farm products a primary part of your food purchases are many and varied. Here are a few borrowed from NY Farms!, a broad-based statewide coalition of organizations, individuals, businesses, agencies and institutions, committed to the future of New York’s farms and families.
Quality and Value in Nutrition and Taste
- Local is usually fresher and tastes better.
- Fresher food is more nutritious.
- Local food offers better value for your money. You pay for freshness and taste, not packaging, refrigeration and freight.
- Connections to local farms assure that more people in a community have access to culturally acceptable, nutritionally adequate food through local non-emergency sources.
Supports the Local Economy
- Local farms mean more local jobs for local people.
- The economic “multiplier effect” (the number of times a single dollar is circulated in a community) is higher for family farms than other business sectors.
- Every dollar is turned over up to five times when farmers buy supplies, equipment, fuel.
- When you buy directly from farmers, the farm family receives more of the food dollars spent.
- The more farms, the more economic opportunity for people in rural communities.
- Suppliers, processors, distributors and retailers all benefit from diverse local agriculture.
- Owner-operated farms offer individuals self-employment and business management opportunities.
- When you buy local, your money stays local.
Preserves Bio-Diversity, Open Space, Rural Aesthetics and a Cleaner Environment
- Diversity of farms and cropping systems contributes to biological diversity.
- Well-managed farms contributes to an aesthetically-pleasing rural landscape.
- Keeping local farms in business preserves open space and wildlife habitat.
- Farms help maintain high water quality by reducing water run-off.
- Fuel consumption is lowered when food is purchased locally.
- Air quality is higher when fuel usage is reduced.
Sustains Heritage, Tradition, Community and Quality of Life
- Farms enhance our quality of life.
- Farms often provide recreational opportunities.
- Agriculture preserves our heritage and enhances our community experience.
- Farms contribute more in taxes than they cost in services.
Maintains Diversity of Farm Size, Crops and Marketing
- A broad spectrum of farms translates into diversity of ownership, cropping systems, landscapes, biological organization, culture, and traditions.
- A diversity of farms contributes to a healthy, vibrant agricultural economy.