Photographed based painting The Vegetable Stall, 1884, William York Macgregor

Locavore- lo· ca· vore | \ ˈlō-kə-ˌvȯr: a locavore is often described as a person who is committed to eating food grown or produced with their local area or region, or within a 100-mile radius from their home, following #The 100-Mile Diet.

Food is a universal language that we all participate in, so we can all become locavores on some level. Obviously, we all need food for fuel and nutrition, but as memorable events are often food focused, food can establish a connection to a place in time.

Creating an awareness of where your food comes from is the first step on the path to becoming a Locavore. Consciously choosing food with lower food miles may sound too restrictive, but it is achievable. The idea of limiting your food choices to food that was grown or produced within a 100-mile (160km) radius may seem totally impossible, but at some point in our common ancestry,  humans definitely managed it.

The first rule to the 100-Mile diet is that there are no rules. Any attempt to be a locavore instantly makes you a more conscious consumer and consequently lessens your carbon footprint. Ultimately, if you decide to take the month-long challenge, we hope that it encourages permanent and positive changes in how you make food choices.

How to become a Locavore

If being a fulltime Locavore for March 2020 seems too daunting consider finding a level that works for you, here are some ideas:

  • Start with one meal a week, or try it on weekends. As you discover more suppliers it will become easier to add more local produce or products to your diet. If you enjoy cooking, then this is a fun challenge, share the recipes you create or plan a Locavore Feast.
  • Change one thing, buy Kiwi made over imported goods, then next week add another.
  • Eat seasonally and try new things.
  • No matter where you live there will be exceptions, things you don’t want to live without. In this case, make the most sustainable choice possible for your situation. Things to consider are the packaging your food comes with – is it biodegradable or recyclable?
  • Most people don’t want to give up coffee or chocolate, so pick products that are sustainably grown or a Fair Trade product.
  • Create a potted vegetable garden,  it could be a few pots on the doorstep, your balcony or even your windowsill. Local nurseries grow beautiful crops in pots.
  • Like fresh herbs? It is often cheaper to go to the garden centre and buy a plant, rather than a bunch from the grocer. Plant it in the garden or a larger pot for more fresh herbs or give away to someone else who’ll use it.
  • Farmers markets – try Farmers In Martinborough, we have the TK Farmers Markets, Carterton, Greytown and Masterton.
  • Food swap – when it was commonplace to maintain your own family vegetable garden, you were instantly a locavore. If you grow too much of something, try and swap with a neighbour.
  • Unwanted food rotting in gardenings attracts pests. Post on Facebook or Neighbourly, someone will clear up under your fruit or nut trees in exchange for the produce and you’ll be helping other people to be locavores.
  • Foraging – free wild food, the offerings in the Wairarapa region are impressive. Like wild food? Grow your own Horta Plot.

Join in

These are just a few suggestions to help you become a locavore. If you have any ideas or know of a local producer we can add to our food map, please comment. If posting food on Instagram #locavore2020 or #swbglocavore


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