In our home, when possible, we always try to buy the goods and services we use, locally.
Sometimes, this is relatively easy. Buying fresh produce at a local Farmer’s Market in the summer or the choice to use a local hair stylist or coffee shop.
Sometimes, it’s more difficult. This is especially true with major purchases like automobiles or financial products like insurance, where you know that a large portion of the money you are spending will leave your region.
It’s not that it’s necessarily always bad when this happens, it can be argued it’s good for the economy.
It’s just that we prefer to see as much of our money as possible stay in our local area to support our friends and neighbours.
These guys own a couple of my favourite restaurants in the community that I live in, Quispamsis. They are expanding to the neighbouring city and had samples of some of their offerings on display. There was smoked salmon and various cheeses, as well as, some sauces and dips that are made at the restaurant.
When you buy local goods and services you are stimulating your local economy, strengthening communities and businesses, as well as, creating employment opportunities.
Did you know, local businesses tend to buy a lot of their goods and services from their fellow local merchants and studies suggest that community groups receive up to 250% more funding from local businesses.
Lots of handmade crafts. I loved the hobo bags as well as the various items crafted from local granite. I had my eye on those tea-light holders!
Ecologically, buying local also makes sense. Goods produced and consumed locally create a much smaller carbon footprint than items that are shipped long distances.
Communities with strong local businesses tend to be unique and vibrant. This “uniqueness” can be a catalyst to further growth through tourism and the arts.
Some locally made fruit wines.
We all know of small communities that are success stories because they offer something distinct, something the locals created, believed in, and nurtured until it stood on its own.
Unfortunately, there are too many of the other stories, where something bad happened, usually economic, and the community withered and died.
Don’t let this happen to your town. Big box stores and chain restaurants are fine, but the savings you think you are achieving may have far deeper costs.
What are your thoughts on supporting small local business; do you agree or disagree?
What about your family, do you tend to shop locally?