Friday, 3 October 2008

becoming a locavore

I discovered a new word just now, one that appeals to me on many levels: it was coined by women; it expresses a hopeful view of what we can do to avert climate catastrophe; and it quickly achieved inclusion in the New Oxford American dictionary. In fact, it was declared by Oxford University Press USA as the 2007 word of the Year.

The word is locavore and was invented recently by four women in San Francisco. It defines a person who tries to eat only food grown or produced within a radius of 100 miles. Such food is said to be more nutritious, to taste better, and to use less fuel in transportation.

I support the concept expressed in this new word, though I have read it can be better to transport food from a distance if it comes from a more environmentally efficient source than the local one.

Enthusiasm for the ultimate in local produce - my own garden - prompted me to browse the Net and I was researching this topic when I came across the word locavore on a site called Edible Garden.

A class at Bulleen Art and Garden last night has filled my head with plans to transform our garden into a rich harvest of vegetables and fruits. However, a little voice does whisper, 'Yes, but it has to rain!' (We've just had the driest September ever recorded.) On the other hand, there are also more classes promised, on the use of recycled water, so I guess I should stay hopeful. The teacher, Karen Sutherland, showed us photos of her own productive and beautiful garden.

I guess I'm not the only one full of hopeful plans, because I heard on the radio today that the growing of vegetables in the home garden has become hugely popular in the US, Britain and Australia.

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