The past couple of years have done a number to so many small businesses around our area. While some are recovering, others are still barely making it, or not making it at all. The good news is that we, the people, have the power to change this. We have the power to support our local economy and bring business and support to all of these local businesses that could use our help right now. Here are some simple ways to support your local economy right now –
Buy from small farmers
This is my favorite one on here because we have been doing this for a few years now! In order to eat healthier, more nutrient-dense foods, we have opted to buy a lot of our food from small farmers, or from local companies that connect us to those local farmers. For example, we get a lot of our meat from Carlton Farm and they are about 45 minutes from our house. We also get milk, cheese, and more from them. In addition to that, we get vegetables and fruits from Fresh Harvest. This is a local delivery-based company that buys from local GA-based farms and then creates produce boxes for their customers. We have been doing this for a while now and LOVE it + feel so great about supporting all of these local farmers. We do have to get an order from the Grocery store each week, but when we do shop, we try to purchase from local companies when possible, and when that is not possible, we buy from the highest-quality product/company that we can find. For example, Lesser Evil popcorn is very high-quality (great ingredients + tasty + great mission behind the company), and we choose to buy from them vs. the cheap popcorn that you can find for $2. Although we are spending more, it is not only better for our bodies, but it’s better for our minds, knowing that we are trying to invest in our community.
If you are in the area, I recommend checking out The Marietta Farmers Market, Fresh Harvest, and Carlton Farm. Ancient Awakenings, in Woodstock, is also fantastic, and we get our meat and milk from them when we do not have a CF order in the works.
I know this one doesn’t apply to everyone here, but if you own a business, hire locally. A lot of people lost their jobs over the past 1-2+ years and in my opinion, we are in crisis mode right now when it comes to jobs, employment rates, etc. If you own a business, it might be easier and cheaper to find help overseas in the form of a virtual assistant. However, if you hire locally, you are putting jobs back into our community and you are doing good within our state/city. Plus, you will likely find that local employees perform better and are more invested in their job compared to out-of-the-country workers. Less work for you!
Attend community events
Now, I’ll admit it: I’m bad about this. I was raised in Marietta, so the same events that go on year after year kind of bore me… Well, except for the Taste of Marietta – that is always a fun one. But, attending community events can be so beneficial when it comes to implementing simple ways to support your local economy. Supporting community events is a simple way to support local vendors and companies. From art fairs and farmers markets to food festivals and nonprofit events, supporting community events is a great way to touch multiple lives within your community. You can support community events in lots of different ways beyond simply buying tickets or attending. Consider sharing their information on social media, inviting friends and family, volunteering at an event, or donating items or money.
Support USA-based companies
It’s incredibly tempting to order whatever it is you need from large online companies like Amazon, Walmart, and Target. But how many of those items can you buy locally? If I had to guess, much of what you’re buying online can be sourced locally. When you shop at local businesses, you’re not only supporting your economy but you are also likely making an impact on the environment as well. If you’re shopping somewhere that makes their own goods or sources items locally, your purchases will have much less of an environmental impact than if you were buying items sourced from another state or country.
A fantastic example of this is Criterion Technology, Inc. They are based out of Thomaston, GA, and pride themselves on their four pillars, which are:
- Their people are their best resource: “Criterion is an equal opportunity employer and is proactive in training, empowering, and developing our employees. We emphasize work place safety through employee involvement in job safety training, job hazard analysis, and pro-active prevention activities.”
- They support their local community: “Criterion actively supports local charities and community organizations. We participate in civic programs such as Smoke on the Water, a festival supporting local volunteer fire departments, and the Harbor House, a temporary home for children from dangerous environments. Our employees also passionately support the Empty Stocking Fund toy and food drive for underprivileged children.”
- They are very customer focused: “We recognize that customers are the reason why we exist, and we are very aggressive about doing whatever it takes to make our customers happy and successful.”
- They help protect the environment: “With several aggressive and comprehensive recycling and waste disposal programs in place, Criterion has taken a true leadership role in working to protect our environment. From plastics to corrugated paper to chemical waste disposal, Criterion meets and exceeds all federal and state laws in an effort to protect and preserve our valuable resources.”
As you can see, Criterion is committed to being leaders in their industry and that’s one reason why I love them (+ other local businesses so much). They go above and beyond. Criterion Technology, Inc. offers many different services, but one stands out to me and that is their injection molding in the USA. Bringing this type of manufacturing into the USA brings so many jobs to our local economy and I cannot cheer them on enough. If you have a business and need any of the many services that they have to offer, I definitely urge you to reach out.
The ideas above are just a few ways that you can easily make an impact in your local economy. As businesses continue to recover from the impact of COVID-19, it’s more important than ever that we focus on ways to infuse money and support into our communities. By making some smart and strategic decisions on how you spend your time and money, you can make a big impact in your own neighborhood.