‘Food provenance’ means where your food comes from i.e. where is it grown, raised or reared i.e. it’s point of origin. In many cases, as we are now seeing in the press, the food we are eating can come from many different sources. Food provenance should also tell us WHAT we are eating as well as WHERE it comes from.
THE FOOD CHAIN
Talk to any primary producer at the local markets and they don’t understand the meaning of a ‘food chain’ “There is no chain here” they say because they grow it, rear it, or make it themselves. No-one else is involved !
In the UK we have many strict regulations as to how farmers must rear animals in the food chain and animals in the food chain are continually tested to ensure they are healthy and comply with these regulations. As we have recently seen these regulations can differ from country to country..
We also have to rely on what is written on the label by food re-seller as to the ‘provenance’ of that food and what it is ! Again, as we have recently seen some of our biggest food re-sellers not only do not know the provenance of some of the processed food they buy, but they are also unaware as to the actual produce they are using .
Maybe this is a ‘blip’ and it is not the norm, but with pressure on supermarkets to provide their customers with ‘cheaper food’ they are bound to search all sorts of avenues to achieve their objectives.
IMPORTANCE OF BUYING LOCAL
Local Food and Farmers’ Markets were developed originally as a low cost retail outlet for small producers. However, compared to other food retailers they have a one enormous advantage. You actually BUY from the producer, grower, and maker of the food product. You can ASK them about the food they are selling. What do you feed your animals on? How did you make it ? How do you grow such good fruit, etc ?
Their food chain is non existent and the provenance of their food is just a few miles away.
Local food = fresh food = quality food and more than that it is FOOD YOU CAN TRUST