Can growing your own produce save the planet?

By Macson Alameda

July 29, 2020

By now, you must be well aware of the alliance’s Rethink, Reconnect, Renew Campaign. We are hosting a series of webinars and panel discussions, the details of which can be found on our social media channels. We are also asking our members to make pledges for the benefit of the planet, and this week’s pledge is to ‘connect better with the food I eat by growing at home, whatever possible and supporting local initiatives that promote produce from organic farming methods.

Growing your own food & supporting local initiatives may seem like two distinct steps to take, but in the larger context, their benefit is the same. They eliminate the hidden costs associated with produce.

Consider scenario A, where you are not making any of these choices, and buying the produce that is available to you in a grocery store. In this case there are a few different ways in which you are contributing to carbon emissions. The first of which is due to the fertilizers that are used during production, followed by the transportation costs and associated environmental issues and the carbon emissions that are caused by the grocery store.

In the second case, everything remains the same, however you are choosing to buy only organic produce, which will eliminate the environmental impact that is associated with the use of environmentally harmful pesticides and fertilizers.

In the third possible situation, you choose to buy organic food that has been produced locally. Here, in addition to the impact of fertilizers, you are also greatly reducing the environmental impact that transportation causes.

Now consider the 4th option, which is to grow your own produce organically. Here, not only do you eliminate all associated costs related to transportation, chemical additives, packaging and costs associated with storing the produce, but you also have developed a hobby that will allow you to connect with nature, which is the best case scenario.

While it may not always be possible to make the best choice, being conscious of these small things, and making the best possible decision in every situation will greatly benefit the planet. These small actions, together can make a big difference!