The United States imports more than $2.2 trillion worth of products from 150 countries every year. That's just crazy, given all the benefits that buying locally can bring to both consumers and communities.
Choosing to purchase goods and services from local vendors impacts your local economy twice as much as purchasing from corporate suppliers. Here are seven local services you can remember to purchase from more often.
Cheap imported goods do not stand the test of time compared to locally crafted goods.
A list of ways we could each show support or teach our friends and family to support the Local Foods Movement
are at the vanguard of thoughtful sourcing, choosing local, sustainable farms
and cooking seasonally.
A new open-source website helps consumers track where their products come from.
Reasons why we like to shop at our local grocery.
Although the concepts of fair trade, buying local and buying organic food are used to aid the economies of developing countries, these same three concepts can help our local communities become the healthy communities we can thrive in.
Just because the package says “local,” doesn't guarantee that it is.
We offer you some helpful tips on how to have a green holiday this year.
Let's make the world a more equitable place for all.
As we look into the future we prepare for a flatter terrain for a new homestead.
We would like all our food to be grown locally, but when it's too cold to grow outside, we often rely on what we've stored from the previous season. Calzones offer one more way to cook with stored food.
Here’s what to look for when purchasing a portable table saw for DIY building projects around your homestead.
D Acres offers alternative economics. We are the 99&: join us.
How does one eat more of the right types of seafood to reap all the health benefits without going bald? Choose local!
Steve Judge of Bob-White Systems in Vermont offers his Micro Dairy expertise in this blog series on how to start and manage a Micro Dairy, from farm and barn planning to selecting dairy cows, goats and sheep to daily operations and being profitable.
The USDA kicks off its Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative.
You have read every garden, homestead and back to the land book in your library system. Your dreams of coffee at sunrise set to the chatter of fowl made real. With hoe in hand and 914,760 square feet rolling out from your feet like a magic carpet; where do you start?
Cut the confusion that accompanies buying a cordless drill with this information on which drill features and capabilities to look for.
Pennsylvania mama Michelle has finally found a homestead! Get her moving tips on take-back programs, packing mason jars, buying cheap appliances, and more.
These resources will help you learn how to eat seasonal foods in order to save grocery money.
Things to consider when purchasing a new or used tractor.
The community of Penobscot, Maine, has declared their local food sovereigny in a move to bypass restrictive state and federal regulations.
Here's how you can find local breweries and wineries in your area.
"Local" is always the best answer, even when it comes to fruit trees.
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel shares her New Year's resolution for 2014: buying food directly from farmers.
An established chicken keeper explains how easy it is to purchase baby chickens from poultry hatcheries.
This blog post tells about Barbara Lee's memories of her grandpa who built a two-holer outhouse for his family and surrounded it with peonies so that there would not be an unpleasant odor.
This article takes an insider’s look at how the seed business works, and what you can do to get the best-quality seeds.
Purchase process of the "promised land"
Packages of bees originating from California last year had a high rate of failure due to the poor quality queens they contained.
A list of the 6 most basic questions to ask before a buyer purchases a green home.
We received some good additional tips on buying land and building a home. These pieces of advice are a roundup of comments taken from the MOTHER EARTH NEWS Facebook page.
Join two modern homesteaders as they begin down the road toward building their small home and self-reliant farmstead on their new piece of raw land in northeastern Kansas.
In order to access our land and put in a driveway, we need to secure an entrance permit. If you're planning to buy land and build a home, check what your entrance permit requirements are before you purchase the property.
Bank loans, especially new home construction loans, require some legwork on the part of the future homeowner. One couple explains how they got a loan to build their new house.
The steps involved in receiving a building permit require some advance planning and paperwork. If you’re hoping to build in the future you’ll want to review the building permit requirements in your area several months before your planned construction start date.
Check out these great searchable databases and other resources for finding local food and farmers.
When Rachel Zegerius, camp program manager, set out to overhaul the food purchasing system at our small camp in Southwest Michigan five growing seasons ago, I began building relationships with the local farming community from the soil up.
Beyond the global, environmental and social impacts of eating local, feeding your organs healthy fuel buys you precious time on earth.
Cam gives an update on his new chickens!
New businesses are springing up catering to folks who want their food homegrown, but without the mess of tending to the garden themselves.
Readers suggest local food products and local food producers to our community.
describing the upcoming fun photo contest with the theme being chickens and the fun they either have or give. Figs and more figs are at the heart of the obsession.
One homesteading couple learns what a land survey plat is, and then proceeds to have a plat completed of their rural property.
Before beginning construction on their new home, this couple is taking steps to prepare their land for their impending move-in by planting perennial natives, building some walking trails, cutting firewood to dry, and more. They’re having a blast!
If you want to build a passive solar house, you’ll need to spend time upfront carefully considering your house plans. Here’s how one couple worked with a contractor and a designer to draw up and then finalize their small home plans with energy efficiency and lifestyle in mind.
Not all green building materials are fancy, engineered products. One couple explores the saved-from-the-landfill options at local Habitat for Humanity ReStores. Hard to beat preventing waste, supporting Habitat for Humanity’s mission, and finding great deals on materials for a new-home construction in one fell swoop.
In order to secure a building permit to construct a new home, many counties require a septic system inspection and approval. Here’s how one couple had a successful “perc” test done at their future home site, along with a quick explanation of what a perc test is.
As one couple plans their homestead-to-be, they spend time learning the lay of their land. One happy fringe benefit: They used this time as an excuse to go morel mushroom hunting. The results of their efforts were delicious.
If you want to own property, you have to find a way to finance buying land. Here, one couple explains how they took out a mortgage to build a home and purchase land.
Before beginning construction on their new home, one couple assesses which renewable energy sources make sense for their location and situation.
Spring tasks around the homestead.
In praise of the garden fork.
FamilyFarmed.org Good Food Festival & Conference partner Vicki Nowicki shares her experience living, learning, and teaching on her suburban permaculture homestead.
One thing that gardening has done to me, as to so many others probably, is that I've started to pay attention to where the food on my plate comes from, and usually the answer is “from our garden."
What would you do if the trucks stopped coming to the grocery stores? Find out how a community college class project spurred students to make plans for just such an experience.
"The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver" by Karen Patry will answer your questions about rabbit housing, feeding, behavior, health care, breeding and kindling.
Jennifer Ford of Bees of the Woods Apiary will discuss how to enjoy a little taste of summer in the middle of winter by developing a new appreciation for honey!
The adventure in the water, on the water or on dry land does stop with the ecotravel activities in the Florida Keys, many of which help preserve and conserve the very things we came to see. Some of the lodging options – and restaurants or food options – are an adventure in and of themselves.
As important as it is to improve life locally, such efforts will not work their way up through the world's economy to solve our biggest problems.
Pennsylvania is under federal quarantine due to the threat of Emerald Ash Borers. Raising awareness and getting the facts are important. However, getting to the root of the problem may be as simple as supporting local food systems.
Swine flu may or may not be the pandemic that cable newscasters are proclaiming - but why take chances? This most recent health scare is yet another reminder that eating local, organic food - preferably raised by a source you know and trust - is just a smart thing to do.
Cam discovers that his chickens have unique personalities....
Look for local foods, such as fresh peaches, from your local farmers' market to make delightful summer desserts such as peaches and cream.
Guest blogger and longtime advocate of sustainable food Gwen Roland reflects on the new popularity of local eating, and highlights some of the innovative local food projects funded by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) grants.
In our ever-growing quest to produce our own food we've acquired two egg-laying chickens!
New Roots for Refugees, a program in the Kansas City area, helps fleeing refugees establish a new home and contributes to the local food system.
Readers share tips and stories about wild food foraging.
This is a must see film about the poverty America’s migrant farm workers faced 55 years ago. Although many of these scenes are far from pretty it can be used to inspire and motivate people to support their local and sustainable farms.
Paul Fehribach sees history in food, cooking methods and recipes and he’s planning a Chicago restaurant that will source 100 percent locally and champion the historic foods and recipes of the Great Lakes region.
Building a vibrant local community through local economics and rural culture.
In more shocking news about the honey on U.S. store shelves, a Food Safety News study analyzes more than 60 jars of honey and finds that nearly all of them have been ultra-filtered to disguise their potentially tainted and toxic origins.
Happy Halloween! Now pop open a pumpkin beer.
As farmers markets open across the country, here are 10 good reasons to get out and support your local farmers. (The freshest seasonal food is just a part of it.)
Small-scale local meat producers are teaming up with mobile slaughterhouses to make local meat more sustainable, accessible and affordable
“The Cleaner Plate Club” co-author Beth Bader shares an adventure to the farmers market with her daughter, her “eat local” food values, and her recipe for Lemongrass Tomato Soup.
Our process of buying the land for our homestead had little to do with logic and a lot to do with emotion. For me, it was a chance to return to the plains where I grew up and be close to family.
Jim and Julie are starting their homestead in Texas while still living in Australia. Managing the project by remote control is the challenge, and they are learning as they go. This is an adventure of faith and confidence.
As I go along, I pull out pebbles occasionally, but only one large stone. Time and time again, however, my hands pry free the remnants of bricks. As late afternoon turns to early evening and my work for the day is nearing completion, a collection of the ruddy-colored artifacts is stacked to one side. The sight of them calls up something nostalgic in me, broken bits suggesting a history that is largely lost.
These online tools can help you find the best sources for local food, including local farmers markets and community-supported agriculture programs.
This Cherry Crostata Recipe is a simple, delicious way to use summer’s rubies.
Two Ogden Publications employees turned beekeeping beginners seperate the honey from the comb in the MOTHER EARTH NEWS parking lot. Thier backyard hives are only four miles away for making sweet, local honey.
McCormick pumps up flavor and encourages healthy changes.
Celebrate harvest season by helping bring local food onto kid's lunch trays at schools across the country during Farm to School Month.
The Roots and Culture Tour is an incredible opportunity for all those interested in working towards a more sustainable and just food system to dive into the local food system in the small and amazing Talamanca Region of Costa Rica.
The creators of Food Inc. make a great effort to teach their audience about where our food comes from and about the effects of our industrial food system. After seeing the documentary, MOTHER EARTH NEWS blogger Jenna Woginrich was inspired to write her own argument about the way we view and consume food - and ask: Will those who most need the education ever see the film?
Cities, counties and states across the country have created food policy councils in response to their concerns about future food security in their communities. The councils work to coordinate local food efforts, such as farmers markets, to develop a sustainable food system.
Pass the cold, wintry months with warm thoughts of how you can eat more local food while supporting sustainable agriculture this coming season.
The benefits of a membership in a CSA and how supporting local organic farming is not only good for you but good for the Earth as well.
Could you eat only food grown within 100 miles of your home for 10 days?
Learn more about this challenge and why you should consider taking it on.
The options for obtaining locally grown food have expanded in recent years, particularly with farmers markets. Expand your diet beyond your garden and meet the folks who can help you do that and stay local.
Restaurants in the United Kingdom can be evaluated and accredited based on choices such as purchasing ethical meat and dairy products, choosing fair trade coffee, monitoring energy use, supporting community charities and serving tap water.
Community food events are an outstanding way to share the abundance of our harvest and strengthen local community ties.
Support America's artisan cider makers by putting locally made sweet and hard apple cider on the Thanksgiving table this year.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS is proud to announce we have won a prestigious publishing award for our Guide to Green Cars.
Celebrate and spread the word about Fair Trade food and products with a World Fair Trade Day breakfast on May 14.
No one will miss the meat when you serve up fabulous vegetarian versions of Thanksgiving favorites. Try two versions of mushroom stuffing, mushroom gravy or delicious roasted Brussels sprouts this holiday!
A story of life, death and rebirth of a hoop house.
Completing tasks in preparation for a few days away from the homestead
With the U.S. importing 91 percent of its food, many crucial details of what we're consuming can be hard to trace: how our seafood is caught or produced, health codes across borders, and how the ecosystems are being affected. But does that matter?
The documentary Urban Roots takes a look at how city farming is transforming the city's vacant lots into community gardens, ultimately changing the community as a whole in the process.
A cheap plastic pin reveals allies on Capitol Hill.
A beginner farmer learns about taking on the responsibility of raising animals.
This Thanksgiving consider opting for a pastured turkey instead of a commercially raised bird, and think about buying local Thanksgiving foods, too.
A nine-to-fiver turns a corner and leaves behind a twenty-year career to grow food amongst housing developments and strip malls.
A beginning urban farmer grows nothing without a smartphone.
Geoff Taylor remembers a quality discussion with his cat, in which the amazing benefits of owning free-range chickens are the primary topic.
Sandy Boyce's sauerkraut was a hit, selling out each week, until her county health department asked her to stop. Across the nation, regulations can prevent small-time home producers from distributing their 'cottage foods' to the public.
Since getting the homestead functional, we have focused on food - local producers, access to food and ways to educate and communicate. This blog describes a couple of my useful and favorite organizations, Slow Food and the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance.
A brief story of how a creek was damaged and how it was reported to the authorities properly.
Labels on commercial foods are difficult to decipher and misleading. For healthful food, healthy bodies, healthy communities and planet, we need to grow and purchase our food locally.
Both organic and local food are important if we want to eat nutritious and delicious food. Furthermore, our current food system is in jeapordy because petroleum and water supplies are dwindling and climate change is resulting in more extreme weather.
For calendar year 2015 brothers Edmund and Garth Brown are eating only food that they have produced on their farm or bartered for from a neighbor. To do this successfully they must raise and butcher their own meat, hunt, forage, and cultivate a large vegetable garden.
Urban food forests and public gardens provide communities with an edible landscape for everyone to share. These public fruit forests are the new trend in urban agriculture and play an important role as sustainable local food systems in their communities.
Knowing where lumber sawyers exist locally opens the door to all kinds of DIY projects. For example, storm-damaged trees can be turned into useable lumber instead of heading to a chipper or landfill. But you can take advantage of milling lumber at local sawmills only if you know where to find them. There are online resources to help you find a sawmill near you. Search by state or Zip code using the sawmill locators below and you will be on your way to turning raw wood into quality-cut lumber for DIY projects without the need to purchase any equipment yourself.
What does it take to build truly sustainable houses – the kind people really want and can afford? If you build small and use natural building materials, then most likely you’ll be able to build your own home in a reasonable amount of time for cash.
A travel log of our family's mission to find local food sources on our trip to Puerto Rico.
Check out these tips and share your ideas for welcoming 2010 with a green New Year’s Eve party.
A few months back I heard a comment on an NPR radio program that really caught my attention. The program was about the local food movement and at one point the guest on the show said, “Now remember - just because it’s local doesn’t necessarily mean it has a smaller carbon footprint. That Argentinian apple that was shipped on a barge with thousands of tons of other apples may actually have required less fuel per apple than the apple than came from a few hundred miles away in the back on a farmer’s pickup.”
Homegrown vegetables are a lesson for kids in where food comes from.
A list of links to orgs, associations, websites, books, and other resources related to local economies, community resilience, green business, corporate social responsibility, green jobs, environmental and social entrepreneurship, and investment.
Growing Local Food is a new book that encompasses all the needed basics to grow plants, keep heritage breed animals and bees. The author is a homesteader and physician who gives the readers the basic information to grow or find nutritious, local food
Simran Sethi enjoys the fruits of late summer at a local farm dinner.
Simran Sethi looks back at her New Year's resolution: to nourish herself.