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Evolving stories About Growing Food in a Big City

How far does your food travel?

Cassandra West

Agricultural Footprint BriefWe found the above chart while reading a 2003 report from the Agriculture Footprint Brief titled "Eating up the Earth: How Sustainable Food Systems Shrink Our Ecological Footprint." The local-food movement goes beyond city dwellers' desire to work in a garden because it's a cool idea. It has strong ecological implications we all should consider.

"The Earth provides a perpetual bounty as long as we don’t destroy its self-renewing capacity with our appetites. Today, however, we are eating up the planet," the Agriculture Footprint Brief states.

"Our global food system, with its resource-intensive production and distribution, is using almost half the planet’s ecological capacity and is slowly degrading our natural resource base. To assure our well-being, we must close the gap between human demand and ecological capacity. Sustainable food systems offer viable opportunities to shrink humanity’s food Footprint to a size the Earth can support."