I applaud the promotion of using local products. It never made sense for us to send local products across the country and not to the store a mile away. Unfortunately, there's been some misunderstanding of what local means. I thought the idea was to use less transportation energy and still get fresher produce.
The area around Dallas/Ft Worth used to have farm after farm. Gradually the good farming soil has been covered by concrete roads, houses and businesses. There are farms around, just not very many. I realize we can't get all our produce from the few farms in the area.
The signs in my neighborhood Kroger boast of using local Texas produce. Unfortunately, all the towns mentioned are anything but local. The closest city to me on the banners is more than 350 miles away. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma is less than 200 miles away. Hot Springs, Arkansas and Joplin, Missouri are closer to me than Uvalde, Texas. Which is local produce?
The other three banners were cities from 550 miles to 700 miles from me. New Orleans, Louisiana; Kansas City, Kansas; Tupelo, Mississippi; and other cities are closer to me than the closest "local" Texas city more than 550+ miles away. El Paso was the banner farthest from me at 650-700 miles away. Decatur, Alabama; and Nashville, Tennessee are about the same distance. Santa Fe and Taos, New Mexico are closer to me. The closest parts of Mexico are less miles distance than El Paso.
While I want to support my community and my state, buying local to me means less than 200 miles away when possible.. If that means Oklahoma, Arkansas or Missouri, that's okay. It should be more helpful to the environment than trucking in everything from over 500 miles away. It's not like there aren't more local places to sell produce to for the growers farther away. Houston, for example, is a large metropolitan area far closer to 3 of the 4 banner cities at my Kroger.
While keeping things in state and calling them local may not be a problem in some other states, the true local products being from other states is just as valid.
Like many things we do, most of the shoppers probably never even thought about what the banners said, just took them at face value. We need to ask for reality instead of fiction, even in our grocery stores.