Why Buy Local?


What Is “Local”? 

The word LOCAL can mean a lot of different things depending on who is defining it.  The Food Co-op defines local as products grown or produced in Jefferson, Kitsap, Island, Mason and Clallam Counties.

As organic farms and processors get bought up by large, sometimes multinational, corporations and grow to a scale that departs from the original intentions of the organic movement, food eaters are turning their attention to the farming operations in their own backyards. Cultivate your local palate, learn about local producers in our region, get in on local food conversations, or explore your own “eat local” challenge.

The Food Co-op is committed to creating a viable market for local farmers — at the height of the growing season, local farmers provide us with about 25% of the produce on our shelves. When you buy local organic produce at the  Port Townsend Food Co-op, you are not only bringing healthy and seasonal food direct to your table, you’re helping to strengthen our local economy. Please visit the websites of some of our local farmers, and during the harvest season, visit those participating in the Jefferson County Farm Tour.

Why Buy Local?

Support jobs

National chains often bring loss of jobs. The opening of a Wal-Mart reduces retail employment by an average of 150 jobs in the county of its location. Your local food co-op supports over 100 staff members.

Support the environment

Local products use a smaller carbon footprint to enter your home. In 2014, 2.18 tons of salmon sold in our store arrived by bicycle delivery!

Support choice & diversity

Though a single local shop likely stocks a smaller selection than can be found online or at large chains, a multiplicity of independent retailers creates great diversity. Not able to find what you’re looking for? Just ask our Member Services Desk staff if we can get it for you.

Support quality of life

Driving an hour or more to shop elsewhere takes quality time away from your day and personal relationships. Wouldn’t you rather be gardening?

Support community organizations

Non-profit organizations receive an average 250% more support from smaller business owners than they do from large businesses. In 2014, the Food Co-op paid out $36,893 to support local non-profit organizations.

Support your health

The shorter the time between the farm and your table, the less likely it is that nutrients will be lost from fresh food.

Support land preservation

When farmers get paid more for their products by marketing locally, they’re less likely to sell farmland for development. Did you know you can ask our clerks to “round up” to the nearest dollar on your register total and the spare change goes to the Jefferson Land Trust?

Support the local tax base

A portion of the sales tax you pay for non-food items stays in our own county for vital public services.

How Do I Find Local Products In The store?

Buying local makes our community stronger and more resilient, which helps us all. To make it easier for you to support LOCAL, we have labeled Local products with the symbols below.

Products produced or grown in one of these five neighboring counties: Jefferson, Clallam, Island, Kitsap, and Mason.

Products produced or grown in one of these five neighboring counties: Jefferson, Clallam, Island, Kitsap, and Mason.

Products produced or grown in Washington State.

Products produced or grown in Washington State.