Which grocers are the most local? You might be surprised at the answer.
It’s no mystery that shopping, eating and pretty much doing anything “local” is not only good ethics, but its also good business. You’ve seen the signs at large supermarkets touting their support of “farms in your neighborhood”, but according to a sampling of several Sonoma County markets (both locally-owned and not), “local” can mean up to 800 miles from your neighborhood.
Farmers Guild Executive Director Evan Wiig recently tallied the number of fresh local veggies (meaning from Sonoma, Marin, Mendocino and Napa) at nine grocers, and the results were pretty interesting.
According to his survey, Healdburg’s SHED was the biggest winner with 53 products from local farms. Oliver’s came in second with 39, followed by the Sebastopol Whole Foods (38), Community Market (31), with the rest offering considerably less. Particular notice went to Safeway, which has started a large campaign to “support farms in your neighborhood”, but in his survey had the lowest number of items: 3. Wiig hopes to use his findings in this first sampling as an impetus for local grocers to step up their game. Read more about Wiig’s Grocery Store Challenge at The Farmer’s Guild Blog.
Here is Wiig’s list of products.