A study conducted by USDA in 2017 indicates that we are spending $3.67 of every $10 food at food service establishments, and only $0.78 goes to the local farm producer.
Anyone going outside in January and February in North Dakota knows the value of a row of dense shrubs. Windbreaks and shelterbelts reduce the amount of wind, hold snow for moisture in the land, provide protection for livestock and wild animals, and offer a food source for birds; and if the right shrubs are planted, they can be a great value-added food source for humans, too.
Cucumbers are showing up in local farmers markets and roadside stands and local producers are happy to sell them with the rest of their vegetables they offer. And while often thought of as a vegetable, cucumbers are actually a fruit. And as with all fruits and vegetables, cucumbers are very healthy.
One of Stacey Swanson’s favorite recipes for July 4 is a wonderful way to mix foods from local producers with food purchased from your local grocery store. Look for the vinaigrette’s raspberry jam and honey from Pride of Dakota vendors.
Rhubarb is plentiful in the spring in North Dakota. Lindsey Harriman shared this dessert at the Vision West ND Consortium meeting in Williston with rave reviews. It was made from rhubarb out of her backyard garden. What a great combination - locally-grown rhubarb and strawberries from your local fruit grower or local grocery store.
With North Dakota facing a labor shortage, the case for local businesses and job creation seems irrelevant. But there are numerous other reasons to support and attract local businesses in your community.
We’re frequently asked by community leaders, entrepreneurs and business owners, “So what businesses are considered local?” In rural communities the short answer is, the ones your community supports, has a relationship with or needs in order to maintain quality of life.
Most of us know and understand there is a multiplier effect associated with spending your money with local businesses and keeping that money circulating in the local economy. But just focusing on where we spend our money would be short-sighted