Debunking the Locavore Movement

December 11, 2007

First off, how can such a ridiculous word as “locavore” be word of the year? “Truthiness” was way better.

But anyway, to get to the merits of locavoratiousness, The Economist was a year ahead of the NY Times on this story, but even so, it’s important to recognize that eating locally-produced food will play a minimal role at best in fighting global warming, and may even cause an increase in CO2 emissions.

If It’s Fresh and Local, Is It Always Green?


One Response to “Debunking the Locavore Movement”

  1. Thomas Says:

    I would hardly say that this article “debunks” the local food movement. It does pose an interesting question though. If, according to this study, small scale farming operations actually produce more carbon dioxide, then what is the point of changing the status quo?

    Huge agribusiness interests are probably more efficient with regard to shipping their food because 1) they want to keep their costs down and 2) their huge scale allows them the logistics to make this possible. To take a page from your book, profit is the prime mover here.

    As far as I know, the point of eating organic food is to avoid toxic pesticides and non-sustainable farming practices. Meanwhile, the point of eating locally produced foods is to support local farmers as opposed to huge international agribusiness interests. “Locavore” is anti-globalization, rather than anti-carbon.

    Why be anti-globalization? That’s the question. And because it’s 8:15 and I have to go to work, I’ll have to take a rain check on answering it. I’ll posit that while locavore may be carbon unfriendly in the short run, in the long run anti-globalization is probably more environmentally and more people-ly friendly than a world system dominated by for-profit corporations. But I’ll have to elaborate on this position later on. Good day sir!

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