Food has long been associated with American holidays. Cookouts for Independence Day. Turkey (or tofurkey) for Thanksgiving Day. Why not local and organic food for Earth Day?
National Cooperative Grocers Association (NCGA), a business services cooperative representing 110 food co-ops nationwide, suggests individuals celebrate Earth Day by making local and organic foods a part of their day.
“We mark many of our holidays with a celebration of food and a gathering of family and friends around the table,” said Robynn Shrader, chief executive officer for NCGA. “Earth Day is a time to reflect on how we can make a positive impact on the environment. Choosing sustainable, local and organic foods is one way to do that – every day. ”
NCGA offers five tips for celebrating Earth Day with food:
- Eat only local or organic for the day. Have you dipped your toe into local or organic food, but never dove in all the way? Earth Day is the perfect time to devote the day’s meals local and organic food. Remember to plan the menus in advance.
- Support a sustainable deli or restaurant. No need to prepare the meal yourself. Co-op delis and restaurants offering organic and locally grown foods are proliferating nationwide.
- Join a CSA. Community Supported Agriculture consists of individuals who pledge their financial support to farms in return for a portion of the season’s harvest. In return for the investment, members receive regular bundles of fresh, local food from the farm during harvest months. To locate a CSA near you, visit Local Harvest’s CSA locator at www.localharvest.org.
- Attend or hold an Earth Dinner. Earth Dinners are specially formatted dinner parties in which guests dine on local and organic foods while discussing their relationships with food. Dinner tools and conversation starters can be downloaded at www.earthdinner.org.
- Plant your own garden. It’s not all about eating on Earth Day. Consider spending April 22nd planning or even breaking the soil on your own vegetable garden. No room for a garden? Consider creating a community garden with friends and neighbors.