Celebrate Earth Day by Eating local!
At the 2021 Climate of Hope forum,
Mireya Gomez Contreras and Hermelinda Vazquez, members of Esperanza Community Farms discussed the benefits of eating local, organic foods to reduce climate impacts. Hermalinda Vazquez emphasized, "When we go buy food we have to think, decide, and choose where we're going to buy at." She explained that consumers should buy local and organic when they can. Esperanza Community Farms is a Pajaro Valley-based farm that aims to increase food security and good health for low-income families through their sustainable agriculture practices. The US National Institute of Food and Agriculture describes sustainable agriculture as a way to, "protect the environment, expand the Earth’s natural resource base, and maintain and improve soil fertility."
Eating local, plant-based options has many benefits for your personal health and the planet. When you buy from local farmers you are more likely to receive fresh, seasonal produce that is loaded with the nutrients that your body needs. Eating seasonal fruits and veggies is also good for the planet because production requires less energy (greenhouse gases) since they are not being imported from far locations. Relying less on imported produce also reduces the amount of plastic that is used for packaging. Purchasing from a local farmer's market allows you to use a reusable bag and pick out your food.
Calfresh shoppers can also use their EBT at farmer's markets. The incentive program, Market Match, lets Calfresh shoppers earn back farmer's market credit when purchasing fruits and veggies.
If you are interested in supporting local farmers check out:
(Grand Opening- 4/20/21)
2pm - 6pm, Tuesday
Ramsey Park, Every Tuesday
Watsonville Certified Farmers Market
2pm - 7pm, Friday
City Plaza Downtown Watsonville
10am - 2pm, Sunday
215 Reservation Road
9am - 2pm, Friday
Del Monte Center (formally held at Monterey Peninsula College)
1410 Del Monte Center (in front of Chipotle and Starbucks)
Local Food Banks
Lunch Program, 12pm - 1pm
Pantry Program, 9 am to 11:30 am & 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
8 am – 4 pm