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“Local is the new normal…”

Earlier this week I did my once a month transaction with the smiling Big Issue vendor at the Claremont traffic lights. His name is Progress.

A simple exchange of cash for a wonderful magazine that is honouring of the vendors who stand in whatever weather is shining or beating down on them that day.

Recently the Big Issue have been shaking things up a bit by inviting guest editors into this monthly creation…guest editors who bring their own flavour and wonderfully inspiring ideas and concepts to us drivers zooming around on our daily journey.

This month’s magazine edition #290/Oct-Nov 2020 has guest editors Sheryl Ozinsky and Kurt Ackermann, the co-founders of the Oranjezicht City Farm.

On page 18 Sheryl Ozinsky has a quote that really resonated for me: “Local is the new normal…”

There’s something about the transformation of “Local is Lekker” into “Local is the new normal…” which has gravitas and a really different feel about it. It is not just an appreciation of local, but rather a firm stand that local is where it’s at.

Coming from Durban my instinct to launch into Afrikaans is very sluggish…so the words “Local is Lekker” hasn’t ever become my go-to, BUT in the context of what 2020 has served us on a platter of new delights, the words “Local is the new normal…” just ROCKS!

During South Africa’s Level 5 lockdown which lasted 5 weeks, I had this extremely strong feeling that going forward I didn’t want to buy items that were produced in other countries. Such a strong feeling that I chose to not buy a beautiful cardigan (made in China) from my favourite shop Big Blue who are renowned for their support of local designers but they battle to find cardigans locally made.

I want to support South Africans.

I want to support the people whose faces make up our Rainbow Nation; the people who are the threads in the tapestry of our country; the small businesses that are headed up by entrepreneurs who have had the courage and creativity to come up with a product or service, and survive, despite being in the shadow of the ‘mighty’ retail brands.

Is it naive to say I NEVER want to buy anything that comes from another country? Well, of course it would be, as possibly those items are just not manufactured here. So instead of saying “NEVER!!!”, I want to rather say “I commit to consciously supporting local services, agriculture and businesses majority of the time with small exceptions where necessary”.

Food. Drinks.

Clothing. Shoes. Fashion Accessories

Music. Movies

Filter coffee? Hmmm, I might have to expand to the African continent like Uganda, Ethiopia, Malawi…forgive me x

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