Buy Local First Week

3 07 2008

I got a mailer today from Rep. Barb Byrum (D-Lansing) proclaiming July 13th thru 19th Buy Local Week.   Since I can’t find it on-line, I’m just going to copy the bulk of the mailer which is 10 Reasons to Buy Local.

  1. Invest in the Community: Local businesses are owned by people who live in our community.  They are invested in the future of our town.
  2. Help Support Local Orfanizations: Nonprofit organizations recieve two and a half times more support from small, local business owners than they do from large, chain businesses.
  3. Encourage a Prosperous Community: Research has shown that in an increasingly homogenized world, entrepreneurs and skilled workers are more likely to invest and settle in comunities that preserve their one-of-a-kind businesses and distinctive character.
  4. Reduce Our Impact on the Environment: A local business can reduce its transportation needs by purchasing their goods locally.  They set up shop in town rather than developing on the fringe or outskirts of town.  This reduces sprawl, energy use and pollution.
  5. Fresher Products for You: At the grocery store, farm- and field-raised foods are fresher, because they are harvested close to home.
  6. Keep the Community Unique: Where we shop, eat, and have fun – these places make our community home.  Our unique businesses are a critical part of th edistinctive character of our local communities.
  7. Improved Customer Service: Local businesses often employ locals with a better understanding of the products or services they sell.  “Hometown” employees take more time to get to know you, the customer.  When an employee knows your typical needs, it makes shopping easier and less time-consuming.
  8. Create Good-Paying Jobs: Small local businesses are the largest employer in our community and they provide the most jobs to residents.  Small business entrepreneurs account for 98.4 percent of Michigan employees.
  9. Keep Money in the Community: Much more money recirculates locally when purchases are made at locally owned businesses.  This multiplier is due in part to locally owned businesses purchasing more often from other local businesses, services, providers, and farms.  Buying local helps grow other businesses as well as the local tax base.
  10. Find What You Need: A marketplace of thousands of small businesses is the best way to ensure innovation and low prices over the long term.  Small businesses select their products based on their interests and the needs of their local customers.  This guarantees a much broader range of product choices.

I’m not even a Democrat and those all sound like good reasons to me.  The less we shop at Wal-Mart and the more we shop at that mom-and-pop shop down the street, the more good we’ll do for this horrendous economy.

Rep. Byrum also include a link to Buy Michigan First which seems be more of a site for local companies to bid on state projects than a place to find locally owned businesses, so I’m not really sure why she included that.  A town-by-town directory of local shops would be a great help, so maybe someone can get on that. 😉  In the meantime, keep in mind the week of July 13th to buy local first.

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