What were once staples of daily living in our communities -- butchers, bakers, fishmongers, and greengrocers -- are now seen as inefficient when large chain grocery stores deliver all-in-one convenience. But "fast and convenient" has weakened our communities. As the African proverb says, "If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together."
Ottawa is enjoying a bit of an independent coffee revival that includes new cafes, small-batch roasters, and knowledgeable, artistic baristas. It's worth noting that this trend isn't just hitting the downtown core, but is also spreading to the suburbs and rural areas as well. East or west, downtown or outskirts, we've found some of the city's best coffee to quell your caffeine craving.
In Dawson City, one step away from the arctic circle, we are working to promote more local food production. Here, more than anywhere else, food matters. We are at the end of the road and conditions are quite crude. Food here is expensive, but mostly fresh, which is already a huge improvement compared to 100 years ago.
It's amazing to me that people argue organic vs. local when it comes to their food. Is organic only for those who don't want toxins in their bodies, and local is reserved only for environmentalists who weigh their food miles? It's actually best that we all strive to be eating local AND organic food. Our grandparents ate "organically" and locally.
This year, I think it's time to do away with your grassy lawn and replace it with food! That's right, having your own vegetable garden has always been smart, but now, it's also trendy. Let's hear it for eco-progress! Here are nine reasons that you should get planning and planting your urban farm (or even a simple herb garden) today...