Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Why regional Products

Good Morning everyone,

apparently I have been reading a lot about food and nutrition in the newspaper lately and most of you know that I am completely pro buying regional products. It is a very urgent topic and important if we want the next generation to be able to enjoy the same things we do, live and enjoy nice landscape and have quality of life that does not have to suffer due to failure of the last generation. Sustainability is what this is about!

Just to let you know up front I do know that we cannot buy everything regionally because not everything grows here and yes I agree we live in globalized times.

That having said I want to give you a scenario of a person who buys milk from a regional producer. With that I will give you the value added chain which we often times do not see but which should have us decide when we reach for products in the supermarket.

Person X goes to the nearby supermarket. He wants to buy milk. The milk aisle gives him a huge variety of milk brands ranging from milks produced in large fillings which is extremely cheap to well known brands produced somewhere else in the country he lives (this milk is the most expensive) to milk produced in a nearby production company. The price is usually a little higher, but not as high as the expensive brands. Naturally he would reach for the cheapest product to safe money. But what if he chose the regional milk? What effects would this have?

He buys the regional milk. It is produced in a company in his region. By buying this milk he makes a choice and adds money to the company helping them to further exist and even grow. When that factory still exists and grows people who work there keep their jobs and new people can be hired. By buying regional milk Person X secures employment in his region and helps people make up for their living and helps them keeping their standards of living.
When the people still work there and the factory still exists they will need farmers who supply the mik. Therefore Person X makes a choice and adds money to the milk farmers. This helps them to further exists. When they still exist their cows which produce the milk will continue to exist. They are out grazing on the hills and pastures in the region. So Person X makes a choice and secures space in the region where no houses and streets are built because the farmers own it and the flock is out. This adds value to the life quality of the region because it looks beautiful, the air is clean and fresh and people have a higher quality of living. Plus it attracts other people to this region who bring their money to invest into the region. Person X therefore helps sustain the region for the generations to come.

Ultimately Person X does not just spend a little bit more of money for his milk but actually makes a huge difference in sustaining his environment, something we all should be concerened about.

Of course this is one example but it can be transferred to any other product you buy, like for example jam, meat, butter, water, etc.

To you it might look like 50 cents more but to a whole region, to another generation, to milk farmers, to jobs this is an amount so little yet so effective.

I want to encourage you today to really think about what you buy. Why buy apples from Spain or somewhere else in Germany when you can get them in the next village from a farmer you can see, from trees you can actually see. Like I said, not everything can be bought from the region but get yourself informed about what is there in the region. You can make a difference by a few simple and small choices.


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