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EDITORIAL: The difficulty of local food sourcing

Letter to the editor
Letter to the editor - Google Images

Local food sourcing – it’s seems to be the latest trend in this province.

There’s a want and a need to have locally grown vegetables and protein year-round because people have a fear that what’s being brought in is not always the best product possible, or even safe.

Foods from other countries where regulations on pesticides and herbicides are not regulated the way they are in Canada and the United States can be questionable.

People want their produce to be locally grown and to be fresh.

That’s hardly practical on an island and at best just a romantic idea.

The sad part is that this province has about six months that is not winter and at the very most about a five-month growing season.

Sure, we visualize a longer growing season, but when you consider that its not safe for fear of frost that you can’t plant until late June and harvest in October, or at the latest early November, it’s not a long time for most crops.

When you look at hens and the eggs they can provide and the regulations that are associated with them, there’s not a lot of production that can happen on a large scale unless a farm is outfitted for it.

There are local producers of meat product, but they too must go through a rigorous process to ensure that their operation can continue.

Problem is its hard to compete with producers outside the province who can deliver their product a lot cheaper to grocery coolers.

The solution is that local people are willing to purchase local products at a price that can’t compete with the prices of product that is being brought in from elsewhere, whether it be pork chops from outside the province or lamb chops from New Zealand.

Again, can it be put on store shelves at a price that is competitive?

Of course, it can’t but local people must decide that if they want to purchase local product that is safe and sustainable and go to where the product is available and pay the price.

Local products – are they practical, even possible or maybe even logical?

Even if enough vegetables were grown to go year-round in this province, where would they be stored and kept from frost before they are able to be sold?

Maybe it is possible in this province, but there is a lot of work that will have to be done before it even becomes viable.

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