September 2013 became the first month to recognize a day dedicated to local agriculture.
According to the Illinois General Assembly, in mid-August Governor Pat Quinn approved Eat Local, Buy Illinois Products Day. Recognized statewide, Eat Local, Buy Illinois Products Day will be the first Saturday of every month, the first one being Saturday, September 7.
Illinois Stewardship Alliance’s Executive Director and president of Local Food, Farms, and Jobs Council said the day is a great reminder to consumers to support local economies.
“It’s exciting that elected officials here in Illinois are supporting efforts like this to keep more money in Illinois communities and in the pockets of local farms,” King said.
Supporter of the legislation, Senator Dave Koehler said when Illinois residents purchase Illinois products, money goes right back to their neighbors and friends.
“People talk a lot about outsourcing – think of this as insourcing,” Koehler said.
“More than 95 percent of food consumed in Illinois is imported from outside the state,” said a statement from the Illinois Stewardship Alliance.
Members of the Illinois Stewardship Alliance are encouraging chefs and restaurant owners to purchase food within the state. They have started a campaign and a network designed to push these buyers to pledge that 10 percent of their purchases will come from Illinois growers.