Why Buy and Eat Local?

When I arrived in Pärnu (Estonia) on the 9th of September, I only came with a 15-kg trolley bag and a 5-kg backpack. I had to travel light and leave behind my favorite kitchen condiments (i.e. coconut vinegar, Korean chili powder, calamansi) and paraphernalia (i.e. blender, juicer, toaster). I set out to reset my palate and start from scratch.

As the days went by, I was eating mostly potatoes boiled with salt. I didn’t even know what to buy from the supermarket. I was confused how huge watermelons, perfect bananas,and smooth avocados are available on a cold weather. My body craved for something else. I thought, it’s time to find the local market.

Thanks to Google, I found Pärnu Turg by end of September! They’re the biggest farmers’ market in town. Ever since, I buy everything from them first. Then I proceed to the adjacent supermarket, Rimi, to buy the rest.

Why it’s beneficial to buy from the farmers’ market?

If you’re a locavore shopper, it’s a promised land to be here. Everything is fresh, affordable and the options (i.e. pickles, spices, herbs, dried fruits, mixed nuts) are varied. I am still buying something new every time I go.

If you’re a mushroom connoisseur, it’s a nirvana to be here. These shrooms come straight from the forests. I am still praising their beauty and fragility whenever I see them.

If you’re a multi-colored foodie, it’s a fairyland to be here. There are different shades in a variety. For example, these carrots come in three colors. I am still distinguishing which tastes better until now.

If you’re a superfood fan, it’s a paradise to be here. There are a bunch of berries full of anti-oxidants, anti-aging, and anti-cancer properties. I am still learning to enjoy their sourness.

So, are you going to buy from the farmers starting this weekend? I hope so!

After all, buying local is the best way to eat with the season, synchronize with nature’s life force energy. and appreciate the love and care from Estonia and its hardworking people.

Written and Photos By:
Fiona Jade Lim (Philippines)
MA in Wellness and Spa Service Design Management

*This blog was posted originally for International Student Ambassadors – University of Tartu

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