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Local-food loops

(article, Culinate staff)

Earlier this month, the New York Times ran two stories about the travails of local food. The first detailed Walmart's plans to offer more locally sourced food in its stores. The program "focuses on sustainable agriculture among its suppliers as it tries to reduce its overall environmental impact." Laudable, yes, but at least one critic noted that the company's plans don't address issues around organic or genetically modified food. And while Walmart aims to buy 30 percent of its produce locally in Canada, its percentage goal in the U.S. is a mere 9 percent.

Meanwhile, local food was taking a beating over in South Korea, where crop failures have spiked the price of kimchi. Not only are many Koreans foregoing the annual autumn ritual of making their own fermented spicy cabbage, but as the Times reported, commercially made kimchi — even brands made from those pricey local ingredients — is cheaper than the homemade version. So much for saving money doing local DIY preserving.