1. Recirculate and invest.
By shopping locally, you are pumping money back into your community. A recent Government study has shown that for every £10 spent locally, £3.85 is recirculated within the local community, thus helping national recovery across the entire UK.
Local retailers tend to purchase more products from local producers, which in turn keeps local farmers, manufactures and service companies in business. This collectively keeps people employed and can grow the number of local jobs, which creates a better and more prosperous community in which we all can benefit from.
3. Preserving the heart and soul of your community.
Stop your local high street from becoming a “Ghost Town”, which will enforce your community to have no alternative but to shop with major national supermarkets or the online giants. Keeping your local businesses up and running means that they can generate revenue to support local council services, like schools, parks, roads, libraries and many other services that make your community a better place to live.
4. Carbon footprint.
When shopping locally, people travel less distance and often walk or cycle to do their shopping, significantly reducing the amount of air pollution and traffic congestion – all of which benefits your local environment. Also, the more locally sourced produce equals fewer transport miles which drastically reduces the amount of co2 emissions in this country. Unnecessary food transportation contributes to over 35% of the UK co2 output.
5. Cost v Quality.
More often than not, many of the same goods are available at your local stores, be it at the butchers, bakers or greengrocers. These products are of a similar if not lower price but far fresher and better quality than that of the major national supermarkets.
Did you know ?
Cauliflowers grown in Cornwall are harvested on Monday and transported to London on Tuesday to be graded and packaged by national supermarket chains. They’re then transported back to Cornwall on Thursday to be sold up to 7 days after they left Cornwall in the first place. Ask yourself, does this make any economically or ecologically sense?
6. Safe way to shop.
Smaller shops mean fewer people inside the retail space. Local businesses across the country have been following government guidelines (COVID-secure) to ensure people’s safety whilst they shop, such as customer limits inside shops, screen partitions, and hand sanitising stations.
7. Personal shopping experience.
Local people usually run small local shops – these people know you and your community! A friendly face and a chat are what people need right now. Conversation and local chit chat with the storekeeper may be the only contact some people might have during these challenging times. If carried out safely, this can be an excellent remedy for our mental health, especially for our more elderly and vulnerable neighbours.
8. Bespoke local produce.
When you shop local, you may have more choice than you think as they often stock items that aren’t available at the major supermarkets. Some of which are unique and local sourced, offering you originality and typical local fare not found elsewhere in the country.
9. Crisis defence.
This past year has shown us just how vulnerable our food chain can be in a moment of crisis, whether it be the COVID-19 restrictions or Brexit. Being unable to drive distances to shop at supermarkets or trucks being unable to deliver goods, we have witnessed the dire outcome of empty shelves (even toilet paper fights) and seen our dependence on the supermarket giants only too well. Now imagine if we didn’t have those local shops to supply us the essentials; imagine if you or the delivery vans had no fuel to drive the 5 miles needed to and from the nearest supermarket. We need local shops now more than ever, not as a precaution but as our front line of defence in a crisis.
10. Humanity in our community.
Each town and village across the country has witnessed great acts of humanity and charity from within its community throughout 2020 – an unforgettable and challenging year. The organising of food banks at the village/town halls, local shops and businesses donating food and help for the elderly and vulnerable, ordinary people offering delivery services and general help to others less able or fortunate. This happens when there is a community spirit, a sense of belonging in one’s community. Local shops and business are part of the glue that holds it all together when they are gone, so does the community spirit and, sadly, a sense of humanity with it.