I understand that not everyone has an entire tropical island to grow whatever plants they choose but wherever you are you can start small and simple to create food that is abundantly more nutrient-dense than the peasant food at your local grocery store. Long before the Island, I began growing sprouts in my one bedroom apartment and even during the long Wisconsin winters was able to consistently enjoy fresh greens. Sunflower sprouts are a great jumping off point: crunchy and delicious and there are all kinds of new techniques to vastly enhance the levels of usable vitamins and minerals they contain. (Way more on that to come!)
Even if you don’t want to actually grow anything yourself, you can do much to ensure your own food security by spending as much of your food money locally as possible. Even local greens and sprouts can spend a day or two getting into your fridge and so much grocery store store food is being shipped great distances. Much of the organic food shipped across the continental United States originates in California.
Hey wait, I thought California had no water.
This California water problem is not new: Roman Polanski’s Chinatown focused on this very topic in 1974. If you’ve never seen the film, check it out: organized crime controls everything and there’s really nothing you can do about it.
California’s primary export is probably the Hollywood world view. That world view includes the knowledge that most organic food in the U.S. comes from California and that California is running out of water. We have been guided into the Oh crap that we all instinctively feel. This scenario, real or fictionalized (the danger of relying on faraway places for most of one’s food is always dangerous!) is easy to for us to completely sidestep; if we keep our eyes open and our wits about us we will never find ourselves in such a scary place because all the solutions are so simple and clear.
We are being sold the idea of fresh organics. The more we actually interact with our food, the better off we are. Our plant food is always reminding us of our deep connection to the earth. Even if we are walking around on feet and appear separate, our lives are very much rooted in the earth. The closer you are to your greens when they are severed from their roots, the more benefit you’ll receive from them. Leafy greens are not as stable as many fruits, roots and vegetables and after a couple days all the vitamin C will be gone.
Of course I like being able to order exotic things from around the world. I live on an island so even at my most self-sufficient there are some things I choose to import. I enjoyed at least one avocado a day even when I lived in Wisconsin. Some things make more sense to ship than others. I’d like to see a world where each local area produces with its own local flair. I’m still learning what that means on the Island.
When each local area has the infrastructure in place to grow most of it’s own food, that is a very secure position and all the communities around them are much safer, too. If everything is coming from only a couple places and some drought or disaster strikes, it may be too late to make the changes necessary. Let’s do it now!