June 20th was World Localization Day. This day marks the conclusion of a week-long celebration dedicated to a global movement for change founded on the principles of connection and diversity.
The Localization movement is working to rebuild place-based, human scale economies, producing what we need closer to home. Local economies that rebuild our connections to one another and to the natural world, for the wellbeing of all.
Earlier in the year we introduced you to Helena Norberg Hodge who was our honorary guest speaker at our International Women’s Day event. Helena is the founder of Local Futures and pivotal to World Localization Day. She has been dedicated for more than forty years to the revitalisation of cultural and biological diversity, and the strengthening of local communities and economies worldwide.
Localization is a guiding principle for Arnhem. It's always been part of our approach to food, but this year for the first time ever, we went back to our roots and made an entire collection right here in Australia.
“From climate change to species extinction, from pollution to plastics, the global food system is the single largest contributor to the destruction of our planet.”
– Helena Norberg-Hodge, director of Local Futures & World Localization Day.
We’re blessed to be based in the Northern Rivers of NSW; with a sub-tropical climate and rich volcanic soils our local farmers markets are overflowing with incredible fresh, organic produce all year round. The team here at Arnhem try to shop at local farmers markets as frequently as possible because it's an easy way to shop sustainably. By shopping locally we can reduce our carbon footprint and avoid unnecessary packaging. And of course, it’s a huge treat for our bodies too: fresh, seasonal produce nourishes the body and mind, and enables us to positively connect with Mother Nature. A while ago we wrote about the connection between organic produce and the impacts on climate change: find out more HERE.
By choosing to shop at local farmers markets over big-chain grocery stores we are helping to ensure that small scale farmers are supported, and that money flows directly back to and remains within the local economy. This simple act improves the wellbeing of your local community on numerous levels, and the wellbeing of the planet as a whole. Supporting local farmers committed to regenerative practices helps to protect and preserve local habitats, and restores biodiversity, ensuring soil, air and water health is preserved.
Local food systems are secure, productive, and diverse. Studies show that small-scale, diversified agricultural systems produce up to 20x more food than industrial monocultures (Gul Unal, 2008), and they do so using far less water and land. The global food system is majorly responsible for the decline of our ecosystems and climate change. Local food systems can help us reduce emissions and rebuild biodiversity.
- The global food economy – from land-clearing to soil degradation to air-miles – is responsible for up to 57% of all greenhouse gas emissions (GRAIN).
- Land-clearing and synthetic chemicals industrial agriculture requires are killing the Great Barrier Reef and jeopardising countless other ecological treasures.
- Smallholder farms preserve 95% of the world’s agricultural biodiversity. (Science Direct)
- By shifting to organic, biodiverse farming techniques on all cultivated and pasture land, we could rebuild soils and sequester over 100% of current CO2 emissions.
Arnhem is passionate about living minimal waste and treading lightly on the planet, and shopping locally for food is an easy way to do this. But our sustainability journey is forever evolving and this year we took our passion for localization and made a giant leap by creating our first ever Australian Made collection, Beneath Our Sun. If you missed the story, you can watch it HERE.
The Australian fashion manufacturing industry has been in decline (read more here) so to create our collection within Australia meant that the finished product had to come at a higher price point. And your commitment to supporting ethical, local manufacturing was outstanding! With passionate customers like you Made in Australia is back in fashion again. So we'll let you into a secret... Arnhem Made In Australia will be back again! We've committed to creating a new collection with our Melbourne Makers family later this year.
Shopping locally and supporting your local economy has so many benefits; from physical health, to mental and environmental wellbeing, and economic stability. It's a mantra to adopt on our sustainability journeys, always remembering that earth is one and life is one.
To be part of this progressive, inspirational and life-affirming movement for change head on over to worldlocalizationday.org
You can also wear your values and shop our 'Homegrown' Tee and Tote Bag as seen on Arnhem online HERE
Stay tuned for the next instalment of Made In Australia lovers 🇦🇺