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We can grow our own! L


et‟s look at a few interesting facts about our current food system. A visit to an average


large supermarket might see carrots from South Africa, (5,000 miles,) beans from Kenya, (3,600 miles,) apples from USA or Canada, (4,700 miles). Every iceburg lettuce flown from Los Angeles uses 127 calories for every calorie of lettuce and every carrot calorie from South Africa uses 66 calories of fuel. The average supermarket trolley of food has now travelled 3,000 miles! Airfreight of food has increased significantly partly because air fuel is not taxed and this method of transportation uses nearly 40 times as much fuel as sea transport, yet is still a regular feature of world trade. World food trade has increased twice as fast as population has risen in the last 20 years. There must be a more sensible way! Yes, buy


local food – we have arranged for a range of seasonal vegetables, sourced from within 30 miles of Abbots Langley to be stocked in Budgens – or better still, grow your own! We have a very active gardening society in the


village – one of the longest established in the country – which is some indication of the huge interest that exists locally in growing and the accompanying expertise, demonstrating that we are certainly well equipped as a community to meet many of our food needs. Having said that, you don‟t need an allotment, or a lot of experience to grow vegetables. It is quite surprising how much a small garden space can


yield. In order to demonstrate and celebrate this


“Abbots in Transition” (ALTTA) are organising a community food event at the Henderson Hall on Saturday 17 September from 10.30am to 12.30pm. Book your table by 1 July for the early bird rate of £4 (£2 for a half table). Bring your surplus vegetables, fruit, home made cakes or preserves and help your non green fingered neighbours by selling to them. Taking part is very simple, just visit our


website www.altta.org.uk and click on the “Food” tab, then email Ian or call 01923 291273. A booking form will then be emailed or sent to you. As we are expecting this to be a very popular event (with so many people producing their own food in the village) we urge you to secure your table as soon as possible. Finally if you feel strongly about the


importance of local food, and would like to get involved in a local project please get in touch in the same way as stated above. One example is a “garden share” along the lines of the Landshare scheme www.landshare.net. Currently we move a staggering 333 million


tonnes of food across the UK each year. Why do this when we have so much ability to produce our own food right on our doorstep? If we want to change things for ourselves and future generations we need to work together to make something better. We look forward to hearing from you. Ian Bond


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