How to eat local food on your British holiday

Posted on 30 Jun 2011 in Guest Blog | 2 comments

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Many thanks to Green Abode for this guest blog. For many ideas on green go to their website

The summer holidays are fast approaching and the excitement is mounting for your British holiday. Today, more and more people are looking for green options on their annual break, and eating locally produced food is one of these options. In fact, it should be one of the most memorable and rewarding things you do on your holiday.

At Green Abode we’re big fans of hiSbe’s “Must Be British” campaign and believe eating good British food should extend to your holiday. Food miles is a big issue in the UK, so take some time to savour some local culinary delights, knowing that it’s not travelled half way across the country to get to you.

What are food miles?

Food miles, quite simply, is the amount of distance food travels before it reaches your dinner plate. So why is eating local food a good option? Like every issue there’s much debate about food miles, however, the simple fact is that around 12% of UK food chain carbon emissions are from transport.

In the summer of 2010, a story hit the news about how bizarre things have become in Britain with regard to unnecessary food miles.

Not only did this originate from one of Britain’s most popular holiday destinations, but it also was about one of our favourite local specialities.

Cornish pasties that were being produced metres away from a major supermarket in Cornwall were being transported 250 miles on a round trip to Avonmouth (near Bristol), before ending up on the supermarket shelves, just metres away.

It shouldn’t be like this, and how it should be is possible on your British holiday.

What are the options for eating local food on holiday?

These days there are a whole range of choices as to how you can eat locally produced food. Contrary to common belief, eating local is not expensive, like all things it depends on how you do it.

Farmers markets – Just like at home, farmers markets are a great place to start to taste some delicious and fresh locally produced food. The best things are that you can treat yourself more as it’s cheaper than eating out, and you get to meet the people who produced it.

Farm and local shops – Food cannot be fresher or taste better than buying it from farm shops. Often you can pick your own which can be great fun, especially if it’s strawberries! Buying from farm and local shops is a good move on your holiday as it supports local communities and people’s livelihoods.

Supermarkets – These days, even supermarkets are getting in on the act. Outside of Britain’s big cities most of them have locally produced food.

If budget is a concern you can shop at any of these places and eat while you are out, or take it back to your holiday accommodation or campsite. In fact, what could be better than getting hold of some delicious local grub and going straight out on a picnic.

Restaurants – Of course, a holiday is about relaxation so don’t forget to treat yourself to a meal out. To find out where the restaurants are the serve local food you can do some research before you leave, ask why you are on holiday or take a stroll to find them.

Where do I start to find local food at my British holiday destination?

If you’re fortunate enough to be taking your holiday in one of Britain’s beautiful National Park’s this summer, you will find a range of locally produced food. With so many different holiday destinations we recommend that you search online for local food + your destination.

Bon appetit!


This guest post was written by Chris King at Green Abode – where you can find out about more green travel ideas.


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  1. Tu Nguyen / July 9th, 2011 22:28

    Hi guys,

    Awesome article, really informative and indeed relevant. I’m always keen to make purchases from farmers via farmer markets and local shops, however I’ve never been able to work out if its better value or not.

    I think this question is one thats also shared by our friends and readers… would you be so kind as to maybe write something about Cost/Benefits of buying local and from farmers? is it cheaper to buy locally sourced produce? do they last longer? what are the pro/cons?

    Again, I know that this sort of information is something that the readers of would love to know :)


    • Ruth / July 11th, 2011 9:03

      Hiya Tu, glad you find it interesting and thanks for the feedback!
      Check out this other blog for more information on buying local food plus the main benefits and links to local food directories.
      The question on price is an interesting one… often it is cheaper to go local because you cut out the middle man and the costs of transport, packaging and storage, but it doesn’t always work for all products. If you read the comments posted after this other blog you’ll see one our readers did a price comparison and posted the results – she saw that shopping local was surprisingly cheap.


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