Friday, September 9, 2011

Post experiment thoughts

I have been following Andrea Dean's blog ( ) who is doing a very interesting experiment herself.  She is trying to eat food grown locally on a Food Stamp budget for a month.  I think it's about day 9 now and she is half way through her monthly budget.

It has brought up some interesting conundrums.  Isn't the goal to get folks OFF food stamps and be self-supporting with regards to food? Comments welcome.

Of course it took me years of hard work and dues paying to be able to own land to grow my own food supply.  So how do we get people who don't own land to be able to grow their own food?  Comments welcome.

Why do people purchase their food supply from Costco (you name the store) verses growing their own or buying locally produced food?  I have a few ideas.  After growing and preparing our own food for a month my wife will tell you it is a lot more work and takes a lot more time to prepare your own food.  So the convenience of store bought food is a big factor.  Eating and preparing your own food isn't for the lazy folks, which eliminates most of us.

Price is another big reason.  Local farmers cannot make a decent living selling raw agricultural products because they are competing against cheap industrial agriculture subsidized by cheap oil.  It is cheaper to grow food in a foreign country using oil based inputs and pay the transportation costs than to grow food in Hawaii.   Someone commented on Andrea's blog that foreign mangos are cheaper in the mainland than Hawaii grown mangos are in Hawaii.  Think about that.  Ask yourself why.

Variety is another factor.  Canoe crops grow easily here but people don't eat Taro.  When was the last time you at taro/poi?  Today, Last Week, Last Month, Last Year, or I can't remember????


  1. I eat poi least at work as it is a part of our weekly menu! Why I grow our own fruits and vegetables???? Cause I have been doing it for a long time....was home schooled in Iran...long time ago and one of our school lessons was "having a garden" the desert with no drip irrigation! I find Costco quite boring....though the price seems "right" but not really unless it is a local product from a local farm. I am passionate about preparing food and sharing a home cooked meal with my family and freinds, so no problem with the time grateful that I live in a place where it is possible to grow great food year round.......keep growing!!

  2. those great bacon asparagus creations i made the other day, the asparagus was from Peru (i live in Belgium). unfortunately i didn't read the packaging until after purchase. how can it be cheaper to import a veg that grows in huge numbers in europe?

    on food stamps, i'm not sure how that system works in the US..


  3. Gavin, food stamps is a USDA (agriculture) program to provide food assistance to low income persons. They fund recipients debt cards with a monthly amount that can only be used to purchase food items. The program is expanding fast nationally and in Hawaii one in three persons are using the program.