For some, locavorism is a fad. But restaurants are continuing to adopt farm-to-table practices and new farmers markets seem to be popping up every weekend, so it doesn't seem as though the trend is going away anytime soon. That can be a good thing, and the basic tenets of locavorism are simple: Eat local, shop local, and grow your own food.
“Eating locally can be simple," notes Jasia Steinmetz, author of the recently released Eat Local: Simple Steps to Enjoy Real, Healthy and Affordable Food. "Every time you can buy something that supports your local community and local food system, it’ll have a big impact."
Locavores like Steinmetz believe buying local creates a sense of community, one between farmer and consumer, which has long been lost. Many restaurants tout the “farm-to-table” movement as a return to our roots, and some writers (like the influential Michael Pollan) point out that the food we call organic and sustainable was just “food” to our grandparents. It is a lifestyle that proponents say results in more flavorful food.
Becoming a locavore does not necessarily require a drastic change in lifestyle. It does not require building a greenhouse, learning growth cycles, or raising your own chickens. It can be as simple as just being mindful and checking the labels on the food you're buying. “People are buying things by signage or display, but it may not be the best price or clearly marked," advised Steinmetz.
According to Steinmetz, being a locavore is — at its core — about "voting with your fork," whether that means adding a bit of locally produced food to each meal or asking questions of your local butcher or farmer. In the accompanying slideshow, the author provides 10 easy-to-follow tips on how to ease into locavorism. After all, the more you know about the origins of your food, the better.