Why do we buy local?
Above anything, we actively purchase our food items from local suppliers here on Samos in order to support small businesses and the local economy, especially during this past year when tourism in Samos has dropped dramatically. The economy in Samos is heavily dependent on the tourist industry, which has been relatively stagnant, due to COVID and the so-called ‘European Refugee Crisis’. This was further exaggerated by earthquakes, a mini-tsunami and the subsequent series of aftershocks in late 2020, leaving the local population with damaged homes, a lack of income and a huge sense of uncertainty for future months. More recently, wildfires broke out in nearby areas, damaging olive oil plantations and vineyards, once again putting strain on the income of local communities. It is only obvious that we would prioritise purchasing our food from local suppliers in order to help relieve some of these pressures.
In addition to this, the simple nature of having local suppliers means we can always call out for orders whenever we need, meaning no long waiting times from other islands or the mainland and quick delivery (...well in Greek time). Fast and reliable suppliers can keep up with our demands and ever changing context. By supporting locals, we have also had the opportunity to support local farmers who supply us with fresh, seasonal, organic fruit and vegetables - an initiative we hope to further develop in the coming months. So whilst supporting the local economy we also have the ability to expand our food packs with nutritious products - something severely lacking from the food provided by the current camp foodline. Not to mention the environmental benefits of growing and buying locally!