Wednesday, 4 February 2009

Eat Local

With the newspapers full of doom and gloom with recession talk, it got me thinking about the knock-on effects for food. You know that lovely little restaurant that does everything just how you like it? The one-off ever-so-special unique eatery that you love? Chances are, if it's not part of a franchise (or, lets face it, even if it is) it might well be feeling the pinch at the mo. There are an awful lot of people out there who are out of work at the moment but the reality is that there's also a large proportion of the population that is managing just fine. If you're solvent, consider your local businesses. I'm not suggesting going out and ordering huge meals but do your bit to help Britain's smaller businesses. If you're finding times hard, why not recommend your favourite restaurant, café or supplier to friends and family? You could even have a look to see if they're listed on any review sites and take a few minutes to write a short review.

On this subject, now is a time to eat seasonal local goods if you can. Yes, it's great to eat what you want when you fancy it but consider where the produce is coming from. Tomatoes from the Canary Islands? Not great for your food miles. Now, bear with me. I'm honestly not a raving hippy. It makes sense to be more conscious of what you're buying at times like this. It'll make your food bill cheaper too as seasonal (ideally locally grown or produced) foods are abundant so they're easy to get hold of. Not sure what's in season? I don't blame you. I'm not much of a gardener myself so I rely on Eat the Seasons, who kindly send me a weekly email to tell me whats in season with lovely recipe ideas too. You get one email a week and they don't clog up your inbox with junk. What are you waiting for, eh?

And one more thing... Tesco. They're not going to go out of business in a million years. They have their grip filmly in our highstreets and out-of-town developments. Tesco are happy bunnies. While I wouldn't be able to get all my shopping away from the main supermarket brands, I am trying to buy as much from smaller outlets and markets as I can. They appreciate it, the quality is good and they're real people just like me and you. Yes it's a bit of a gamble but try them out even if it's just for one week.

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