Km.0 cuisine: A more sustainable lifestyle

Reducing our consumption and having a green intention is ever present in households today. Km.0 cuisine has become an intelligent way of practicing sustainability, applied to the raw materials we require to cook on a daily basis. It is an excellent encouragement to create a healthier diet, not just for you, but also for the environment.

 

Image source: Leroy Merlin

Less than 100 kilometers from home

Image source: Levantina

 

Fruit, vegetables, beans, meat… Many products in our shopping basket can be considered km.0. The name takes into account how close they were grown to their final destination, i.e., in most cases, kitchens where menus are cooked daily. It is a different way of seeing food, greatly related to the principles of the Italian Slow Food movement from the ‘80s: sustainable development, ecology, biodiversity, fair trade and an ethical commitment to the people who grow these raw materials, necessary for healthy recipes, in small crop fields.

With km.0 cuisine, the meals in modern households become greener and more respectful with the planet in several ways. For one, products can only be transported within a 100 km radius to be delivered and there is no middle-man. Thanks to this way of buying products, the environmental footprint is reduced. The cost of traveling across oceans and continents disappears and, in exchange, a moderate transportation is encouraged, with less energy used.

Local and seasonal cuisine

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When km.0 ingredients come into modern kitchens, we are also favoring the economy of the city we live in. We can recover, from our recipe book, local raw materials that we had forgotten, such as some vegetables, rather than using the ingredients that are easier to buy in large supermarkets. In that sense we also contribute to their conservation.

By cooking with km.0 ingredients, we enjoy fresh and natural items, that have fewer chemical treatments to artificially increase their shelf-life or, when they do, these are minimal and backed by the EU health regulations.

Another factor is seasonal ingredients. It is, no doubt, a great opportunity to bring back seasonal dishes that encourage a healthier diet, which is more varied and full of flavors.  At the same time, having a seasonal calendar will help us understand how expensive it is to buy some fruits and vegetables during their off-season, when we visit the supermarket.

Shopping without wasting

Image source: Animi Causa

 

The initiative of buying km.0 ingredients is growing in large cities, and it has consolidated within the restaurant industry that cares about the environment. In Spain, 70% of people prefer km.0 ingredients, according to a recent poll on consumer preferences. It helps us become aware of a worrying reality: the continuity of natural resources for the population is a task for all of us, and we must encourage a responsible consumption, without waste. We can do this with km.0 ingredients, they are much closer than we expect. Knowing the origin of our food is wonderful and, with this lifestyle, we can know.

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