Contributed by Martha Lowry
I did not grow up on a farm, but my family has recently moved to a farm and started farming. I personally have always kept a vegetable garden and loved seeing my seeds grow into the food we eat. I also used to love sit in the middle of our raspberry patch and eat them by the fistful. But I digress.
I do believe consumers care where their food comes from. That is one of the main reasons I have come back to school and am pursuing a horticulture degree. I love making my own food. I love selling it in my community and making a connection to those whom I produce for.
But not all consumers do pay attention to where their food comes from. I do not think the majority of people while drinking their coca-cola or eating their hamburger really have any idea, or care as to where or what it is made of (It is made of corn). I can see this changing with the fringe of the population, but definitely not the majority.
Yet in the UK, there has been a huge push towards labeling that tells you where your food comes from. The consumer can then choose to read this information or ignore it. But the information is available. I hope we adopt a similar system in Canada. Let us not make our decisions blind.
The majority of people who I have asked at a farmers market don’t know how a brussels sprout grows, but they buy them every week. As the generalized, possibly biased, view believes these shoppers have a greater connection to their food; it doesn’t give me a positive outlook for whether consumers shopping at a large grocery store have any connection to their source of food.