Recently, I became involved with a group of local small business owners, who like myself wanted to come up with an idea to bring awareness to the excellent resources that we have locally. We set out a long term goal, that our mostly vacant town center would soon be occupied by shared space rentals featuring SMALL BUSINESSES! (Think Etsy + Boston Public Market right here in town!)
Since, we have named ourselves the Boston Local Co-op & decided our first order of business would be to help small business that do not currently have a storefront, partake in Small Business Saturday! We decided on the Shop Local Expo, which will showcase Boston-local small businesses & start-ups from interior designers, private chefs, artisans & basically anything independently owned that could use a little community face time!
With all that being said, I think it is only right that I touch base on why shopping locally is so very important.
For starters, have you ever wandered through a weekend farmers market & thought "I wish I could shop at these booths everyday"? It could be the great pricing since having businesses side by side naturally forms a competitive price point - OR the variety, since local markets offer things that are most relevant to your area & lifestyle.
Local Economy: Compared to chain stores, locally owned businesses are much more likely to reinvest their earned money back into the same local community, in turn boosting the economy! Also helping to create local jobs & not having vacant storefronts throughout town definitely does its part in making a community unique & beautiful!
Produce: When you buy produce locally from a nearby farmers market you can be assured that your produce is chemical free, your eggs/dairy are fresh & sourced from grass-fed meat. Instead of supporting the large industry of inhumane meat breeding & scary dairy tactics. Also, did you know that consuming your local honey has benefits of helping you battle allergies (i know, now that you think of it - it makes sense doesn't it?).
Customer Service: At some point or another we have all had a social relationship with a local small business, whether it be that they know how you take your coffee or just simply addressing you by your first name - these are tough to beat bonuses of shopping local! Knowing the people behind the counter also ensures excellent customer service, friendly interactions & builds a strong community! Being social in these town settings also helps awareness of local charity endeavors, organizations & all around growth!
Long story short, knowing the local resources available to you is just the first step towards feeding the circle of economic growth in your community! SO don't forget to check out your local farmers markets, store fronts, coffee shops & vendor-run events (like ours on 11/26) - your community thanks you in advance!