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grocers and restaurants committed to using locally grown products.

1. Eat healthier, fresh, better tasting foods

Fruits and vegetables that are shipped hundreds or thousands of miles lose crispness, flavor, and nutrients before you eat them. Locally grown produce is often picked at the height of freshness and within 24 hours of when you purchase it.

2. Enjoy season produce and regional varieties

If you eat locally, you get to try all the foods that the Piedmont Region has to offer. All year long, there is a diversity of fruit and vegetables grown for freshness and flavor, with family farmers often cultivating heirloom varieties that are unique where you live.

3. Support your farming neighbors

By buying locally, we can increase the number of farmers in the Piedmont Region. Whenever you buy food, use your food dollars to purchase local farm products and help grow resilient communities and prosperous economies.

4. Sustain rural heritage and lifestyles.

Farming has long been a way of life in this area, and farms have been passed from generation to generation. Family farmers are a central part of our communities.

5. Protect natural beauty and open spaces by preserving farmland.

As land prices and property taxes increase, more and more farms are sold for development. Helping to make local farms profitable saves the rural landscape.

6. Encourage sustainable farming practices.

Family farmers value their water and land because they must maintain these resources to continue farming. Family farms often use less fossil fuel and fewer chemicals than industrial farms. Family farmers are also more accountable through farm tours and events where consumers can observe their production practices.

7. Strengthen local economies and keep your food dollars close to home.

Use your purchasing power to create local jobs and pay taxes that benefit your community. Sustainably-raised foods sometimes cost more to purchase, but their long term costs to the environment and society are far less.

8. Maintain and build local food systems so we can feed ourselves in the future.

As fossil fuels continue to cost more, shipping food long distances will become increasingly expensive. We are blessed with good farmland and must make best use of it, and develop the ability to process and distribute food within our region

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