Does anyone else ever realize that they have become a bit obsessed about something they didn't realize they ever obsessed over? Through my last blog post and conversations following I realize that I have! I have inadvertently, over the past few years, become obsessed with seeking out local food and locally bought and sourced product before seeking elsewhere. I didn't really start noticing it until a few weeks ago when my mother gifted my brother some wonderful low waste products for his birthday. "Oooh! Where did you get these!" I exclaimed in expectation. I knew that many of the items were available at stores in town and wanted to know who she visited. I forgot that my mother is neither a shopper, nor does she have the time to be. "Online" she replied. And I immediately felt a gut reaction of "That's not ok for me". I found myself berating her for purchasing things for my brother online. Everyone does it, it wasn't my money, nor was it a gift for me, nor was I the person buying or giving the gift, so why was I so upset? I thought about it later and realized that ever since seven years ago when we had to get rid of credit cards altogether and only buy with cash, I had become better and better at sourcing what I needed locally. With that need to source local I also became more aware of who was getting my money. I wanted my money to go to the small business owner and the producers of what I was buying. I am extremely fortunate where I live to have so many locally made and produced things and food. I forget that this is not everyone's priority though, and hence sometimes end up berating my loved ones for simple choices. I also realized I have become more obsessed with buying local when someone offers me an opportunity to check out local businesses and producers, and I truly feel as excited as a kid at Christmas!
Earlier in the week I had the opportunity to take a little road trip (an by little, I mean literally only 30 minutes down the road) to get to know more about Local Organics in Seaforth and Maelstrom Winery just outside of Clinton towards Seaforth. I took my husband and my brother-in-law, the three of us had a fabulous time. We also tried to make a quick pit stop at the brewery Half Hours On Earth in Seaforth, and then remembered they are closed midweek, I love their sour ales. Upon arriving at Local Organics I remembered I had been here last year with my friend Karri and found quite a few things I hadn't been able to find outside of the city. Last time we visited I was so excited to find metal straws (which I later also found at a few stores in my hometown Goderich) a metal and wood bottle brush, and bee pollen for smoothies. I was very excited to see what else they had this time.
When we walked in I was again hit by just how much selection there is in this small town health store. I met the sales associate and asked her to share what Local Organics was all about. This sweet and surprising shop (the exterior is rather plain and slightly industrial-farm looking, while the inside is organized and welcoming) is full of wonderful organic fare! I found so many neat products that are from local makers and producers in Huron County. They also bring in organic products from all over Ontario, and Canada, but they try to really glean from close by when possible. I found sprouted brown rice that is actually sprouted in Seaforth! I had no idea that there were foreign found grains being sprouted in Huron County. I also learned that Local Organics sources organic meats from Huron County and surrounding counties. They have beef, pork, lamb, turkey, and chicken, all organic. They also offer organic food box prescriptions with organic fruit and veg. In season they feature local produce, out of season they source organic produce from further afield. They also offer an organic bread order service, you can place your order and pick it up on certain days of the month. They provide organic milks, honey and maple syrup. They have a gigantic selection of kombuchas, local and from many booch brewers all over Canada.
I was walking along looking for different new organic options and found a familiar brand name: LUVU Cosmetics from Exeter Ontario! I love this organic brand from Huron County, they are beautiful and brilliant, it was so fun to see them a few towns over in Seaforth. As a bit of a zero waster I am always excited to see some eco friendly options offered for water bottles, upcycling mason jars, and housewares. This store is where I bought my bamboo handled bottle brush that allows me to only change the natural bristle brush head and compost it. I also purchase two straight metal straws here and a straw brush and they are fabulous.
I was pleased to see one of my favourite coffee roasters, Coastal Coffee, on display in pride of place at the front of the store. Makes my heart happy to see so many of my favourite local producers and makers all under one roof in this wee farming town near the heart of Huron County. The owner operator of this forward thinking health store has vision, and she has brought organic options closer to home for rural Ontario.
To have access to organic, fresh, ingredients, sourced ethically and with care, is a real privilege in our rural area. To have a store that provides those year round, alongside supplements, eco-friendly solutions and many unique products, is absolutely wonderful.
The next time you're taking a road trip, or heading through Seaforth, take a little detour and check out this gem of a health focused store. See what treasures you will find on your adventure.
220 Main St. S. Seaforth