Kentucky Proud products available at Save-A-Lot

By LYDELLE ABBOTT
The Kentucky Standard

August 24, 2008

Corn, tomatoes, watermelon, cantaloupe, salsa, Ale 8, popcorn, cucumbers, peppers and jalapeños, grown or processed locally, can now be found at 102 Save-A-Lot stores throughout the state.

The variety of Kentucky Proud items will differ as the growing season changes, said Peter Dawson, co-owner and manager of Bardstown Save-A-Lot. Kentucky Proud is the official farm-marketing program of Kentucky agriculture. The Kentucky Proud logo on a product signifies that Kentuckians made it in Kentucky. The program has grown from a few dozen members four years ago to more than 1,300 farmers, processors, retailers, restaurants, farmers' markets and Kentucky state parks.

"This is what Kentucky Proud is all about — forging partnerships and helping Kentucky producers find markets for their products. This partnership will help many Kentucky farmers make a living on the farm. It will provide Save-A-Lot customers the opportunity to buy fresh, nutritious, great-tasting Kentucky Proud products and keep their food dollars close to home. Everybody wins," Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer said in a press release.

The average food item in America now travels at least 1,491 miles from farm to plate, according to the Kentucky Proud Web site, www.kyagr.com/kyproud. Food transportation is among the biggest and fastest-growing sources of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. A diet including meat, grain, fruits and vegetables that are imported can easily require four times the energy and emissions of an equivalent diet with ingredients from domestic sources.

Dawson said he sees the chain moving to regionalize more of its groceries.

"I think it's a good idea, it's like buying American; it can only help us." In addition, buying regionally allows consumers to buy fresher items of "excellent quality," he said.

Suggestions from the Kentucky Proud site encourage shoppers to learn what foods are in season and try to build a diet around them, shop at a nearby farmers market, roadside stand or supermarket that sells local foods, ask the manager or chef at your favorite restaurant how much of the food on the menu is Kentucky grown and encourage him or her to source more food locally.

This story, written by Lydelle Abbott, was provided to One Knox courtesy of The Kentucky Standard. Read more stories from The Kentucky Standard at www.kystandard.com.