Preserving Foods at the Local Level
An Increasing Market
“Think globally, act locally” is a concept that has been believed in for many years, and the push to apply this axiom to locally grown foods continues to expand. The planting, harvest, and consumption of local food has been embraced by farmers, parents, school officials, civic leaders, and citizens of all stripes. For example, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has released a fact sheet that details its increasing investment in growing the market for local and regional foods. An increasing number of cities are starting to sponsor local food day events to help raise visibility and to keep their local economies sustainable. A recent report by National Public Radio tells of how a Washington, DC school district’s efforts to promote local food has not only raised awareness, but has also resulted in students actually eating more of their lunches and throwing less away. The popularity of the process continues to grow, along with the awareness of the many advantages that come from the production of local foods.
Many Reasons to Buy Locally
When food is produced locally, consumers and communities can achieve significant benefits. Recently reprinted in GrowNYC, Vern Grubinger has researched and published a number of important advantages achieved with local food production. Crops that are picked at their peak and that have less distance to travel retain the highest levels of flavors and nutrients. Less travel distances also saves energy, less chances for contamination and food spoilage which eliminates waste. Local farms often grow many varieties of crops, helping to increase overall genetic diversity in agriculture. Buying food from a local supplier also helps farmers with their bottom line, allowing them to receive full retail prices where they normally would have to sell their products wholesale and nearly at-cost. Other important benefits include local community building and benefiting the environment with clean-running, small scale agricultural operations.
Keeping Food Fresh and Safe
While local farming has proven to be beneficial to communities, maintaining the quality of freshly harvested food can be a challenge. One of the most reliable and time-honored methods is using flake ice. For over 50 years, Howe Corporation has helped the produce industry keep their products fresh. Flake ice has the most surface contact area of any ice form, giving it exceptional cooling capabilities. The shape of the flakes have fewer sharp
edges than other ice forms, reducing damage for all freshly farmed products that are stored in it. Howe Ice is the coldest longest lasting ice which results in labor, water & energy savings. In addition to transportation, flake ice can help local farmers with displays that not only keep their foods fresh and fully hydrated, but maintain the best appearance and aesthetics for maximizing sales. Packing and displaying with flake ice not only helps solve the problem of preserving freshly farmed local foods, but it also helps maintain premium levels of product quality from harvest to final sale.
Choose Howe for Premium Ice Machines
Ice machines from Howe Corporation help local food producers ship, preserve, and display their harvests. We offer a number of long-lasting machines that produce ice at all different volumes, perfect for fresh foods of all kinds. To learn more about our flake ice machines and how they can add quality and value to all levels of local food production, please contact our team directly.