Word of the Year: Locavore

100 mile diet.gif It’s official. The moment we have all been waiting for has arrived: the New Oxford American Dictionary has announced its 2007 Word of the Year, and remarkably, the word is “locavore.” Okay, maybe you didn’t even know that Oxford had a word of the year, but this is one word you should know.

What the *&%$! is a locavore, anyway? According to the blog post announcing the Dictionary’s choice for this year’s favorite word, “The ‘locavore’ movement encourages consumers to buy from farmers’ markets or even to grow or pick their own food, arguing that fresh, local products are more nutritious and taste better. Locavores also shun supermarket offerings as an environmentally friendly measure, since shipping food over long distances often requires more fuel for transportation.” The post goes on to explain that the term ‘locavore’ was “coined two years ago by a group of four women in San Francisco who proposed that local residents should try to eat only food grown or produced within a 100-mile radius.”

Why take on the locavore challenge? Check out these 10 reasons to eat local food , not the least of which is the claim that eating local is better for air quality and pollution than eating organic.

But be forewarned: it’s not easy being green, including the fact that you may have to give up coffee—completely—unless you live in a part of the country where coffee is grown (read: Hawaii). Check out the eatlocalchallenge.com blog written by authors who are interested in the benefits of eating food grown and produced in their local foodshed. If you need help locating locally grown food, the National Resources Defense Council has a locator on its website. Or visit the 100 Mile Diet website, offering lots of tips on "local eating for global change."

Are you a locavore? Please post a message and tell us your story.

Caroline Heine

Posted at 1:00 AM, Dec 24, 2007 in Environment | Permalink | Comment