Do you ever wonder about the benefits of buying locally made products? Does it help the environment? Does it grow the local economy? In this article, you’ll discover 4 major benefits of buying local.
Big box, bye-bye!
We are all for these amazing shifts in purchasing trends. It’s becoming clear that consumers are looking towards unique, hand-crafted goods and less towards big boxed companies. This has a huge benefit for not only local businesses, but the economy in which they are located and even the environmental impact that each company (and consumer) has.
Large chains may sometimes be cheaper in the short run, but often times the environment and local economy can take a hit when we are constantly looking towards low-quality, fast-made goods.
This is exactly why shopping local matters.
Every Purchase Is Like a Vote
Every time you hand someone your debit card, you’re casting a vote about what kind of world you want to live in. You’re casting a vote for the packaging around the product, the business practices of the brand, and for the quality of the item. That’s why it’s essential to be choosy about where you spend your money. It could impact the people around you far more than you realize.
Imagine for a second that unsustainable, unethical businesses no longer received financial support from customers. Imagine that these irresponsible businesses had to close up shop. Our world would be filled with businesses that care about their communities and the environment. That’s why it’s so important to support local, sustainable businesses.
Here’s why you should get choosy with how you spend your money and 4 major benefits of buying locally made products
HERE ARE SOME ECONOMIC AND COST BENEFITS OF BUYING LOCALLY MADE PRODUCTS:
1) Sustainability in Your Local Community
If you want to create a more sustainable economy within your local community, it’s time to start purchasing from local businesses.
Think about it this way:
What does an ear of corn at Walmart cost, versus an ear of corn from the local farmer’s market?
While an ear of corn from the local farmer’s market might cost you more than an ear of corn from Walmart, the actual costs to your neighbours, the community, and the environment are far greater if you purchase corn from Walmart. The local farmer has put her entire livelihood into growing the largest, most delicious, mouth-watering corn, you bet the farmer’s market corn is going to gain more fans around the dinner table.
Do you think Walmart will care if you buy corn from them? They probably won’t even notice. Mega-brands and big box stores won’t notice your business, and they won’t care how much money you spend. To them, you’re just one tiny customer in a giant sea of customers.
But the local farmer? He’s going to celebrate. His entire family is going to feel the difference. Your purchase from the local farmer is guaranteed to make the difference as to whether he can afford piano lessons for his daughter, or if he can afford to save for retirement that month.
The same goes for other local vendors. Whether you need new clothes, a mechanic, or a special gift for your mom’s birthday, always choose local first. Your purchase is guaranteed to make a huge difference in the lives of your neighbours. Supporting local businesses is how we help each other out.
Curious about some of our amazing local vendors? Click here to see what’s in stock from local, Canadian built businesses.
2) Buying Local is Better for the Environment
In this day in age, many of us have products in our homes that were made in China, Vietnam, Laos, Brazil, or another far-away country. Many of us don’t think twice before biting into a strawberry about how far that strawberry had to travel in order to reach our plates. Most of us don’t think about how much gasoline and diesel it took to get our hiking boots, pencils, tee-shirts, and laptops to the shelf in our Canadian big-box store.
Purchasing items from big-box stores and large corporations means you’re also paying for the semi-trucks, delivery trucks, trains, ocean liners, and airplanes that spewed carbon into the atmosphere to deliver your product to your town.
Make no mistake there are huge benefits to buying locally made products. Buying local means (or even purchasing Canadian-made) means you’re saying “no” to more carbon-dioxide emissions, and “no” to the extra packaging it takes to get a product from point A to point B.
Not convinced? Here’s more food for thought: a study conducted by Tsinghua University in Beijing found that US-China trade accounted for 2.5% of global carbon-dioxide emissions from shipping. Canadians would do good to purchase items locally and not participate in polluting the air for millions of people across Asia.
3) Higher Quality = Longer Lifespan
That cheap, mass-produced dress might look super cute now, but what’s it going to look like a year from now? Not only is that mass-produced article of clothing going to be worn by thousands of other people (which begs the question, who wore it better?) but it’s not going to last very long, and soon, you’ll be shelling out more money for another dress.
This fast product life cycle causes more stress on landfills and more stress on your wallet.
Make sure you’re buying high-quality goods from high-quality vendors, so you’re not spending more money in the long run on low-quality goods with short life spans.
4) More Local Job Opportunities
You care about the community you live in, which means you care about the businesses that operate within it. You want your favourite local businesses to grow, not fail! This is the importance of buying local products
According to Time Magazine, “twice the money stayed in the community when folks bought locally. That means those purchases are twice as efficient in terms of keeping the local economy alive, says author and NEF researcher David Boyle.”
Here’s the truth: in order for unique local businesses to succeed, they need to make enough money to afford to hire help. These local businesses cannot succeed without being able to pay their employees a fair, living wage, and they can only do that with your help.
By Supporting Local Business, You’re supporting Your Own Community (and your wallet)
It’s a no-brainer: purchasing local goods means you’re making an environmentally friendly, economically wise choice. It means you’re not spending more money in the long run by purchasing products with a short life span. It means you’re helping your neighbour grow their business and support more people in your community who need jobs. Be a good neighbour and a good Canadian: support your friendly local neighbourhood business!
Want access to some of amazing, local, Canadian-made brands? Make sure you check out our members here.