It feels good when you were greeted by the shop assistants you know and started a small conversation about your day the moment you stepped inside a local store. But do you know, support locally owned businesses has more benefits than this. It’s way far more than just buying the things you need. Now take a look and give yourself more reasons to shop locally!
1. It has lower carbon footprint.
When you shop local fruits and vegetables stores, bakery, butcher’s shop, textile shop and others, it is more likely to have a shorter transportation journey than imported products. In other words, local products have a lower carbon footprint in terms of transportation aspect.
2. It has less packaging.
Local products can have less packaging as they need not to be wrapped in layer of plastics or packaged in boxes for carriage.
3. Small local farms preserve biodiversity.
Majority of export based industrial agribusinesses adopted monoculture as their farming system. Monoculture is an agricultural method of producing or growing single type of crop or livestock at a time. Monoculture not only causes the loss of biodiversity but also the factor of losing organic matter content in the soil, depletion of nutrients and eutrophication.
On the other hand, small scale farms are more likely to varieties of crops and plants at the same time. This can preserve the biodiversity, organic matter content and the nutrients in soil.
4. It is good to our health.
First of all, the food we buy in local stores is fresh than imported food products. Besides, as you personally know the people behind the business where you bought the products, you can know more about their products, whether they are chemical free, organic and hormone free products.
5. Provide a decent work.
As the local businesses are more transparent, supporting local businesses can eliminate forced labour, child labour and underpaid issues. This can help to achieve the 8th goal in the Sustainable Development Goals from the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
6. Improve local economy.
When you shop locally, more money remains in the community. Local businesses retrieve more revenue back into the local economy which benefits the whole community.
7. Build a healthy community.
Local businesses have a community value, they can provide a platform that contributes social relationships and binding the local citizens. As a result, a strong community is formed and the living environment becomes more friendly and comforting.
What are you waiting for? Grab your tote bag and get some fresh veggies and fruits from your local market!
Lim Shuang Ao
Major in Environment and Sustainable Development, in the Hong Kong Polytechnic University
Intern at Fundación Vida Sostenible