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Old 27-02-2014, 15:32   #16
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Re: eating "local"

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
You would think that as many times as "eat local" gets quoted as a way to save money more real examples could be done. From my experience cruising in the NE "eating local" within walking distance of most places with stores etc means eating at the local pub (I prefer the Brew Pubs and like beer cruising myself"

BTW - eating "local" lobster you got right from the lobster boat is a good example of saving money, on eating lobster. But $20 on lobster for the night doesn't fit with a lot of people who say they can eat for month on $150. (and cooking and eating NE lobster on a sailboat is a messy thing)
Not to go too far with this but since you opened the door...

The quality of the food has a lot to do with it. In the US we get fed crap meat that is raised on corn that we subsidize. In many other parts of the world you get a lot better quality. So you have to make an apples to apples comparison. When you want to eat actual food that doesn't contain GMOs, hasn't been feed corn that kills the animal about as fast as it bulks it up, hasn't been injected with hormones and antibiotics, etc. you are paying a much higher price for that food in the US (watch Food Inc. on youtube if you want to know more). Have you tried to find non-farm raised salmon? Extremely difficult to find even when shopping in stores like Whole Foods. And when you do its around $18/pound compared to $10/pound for the farm raised crap. You can get coho for somewhere in the middle and would be an example of "eating local". Or better yet some stripe bass you caught yourself.

We (my wife and I) will typically spend between $150-200 just to feed ourselves eating quality food. If I want steak for dinner it costs about $10 for a 0.6 pound steak from a grass feed cow. Add some veggies and chicken for my wife and your meal is about $20. So to the lobster example, the $15 meal of lobster, butter and coleslaw is cheaper than other meals.

Now go to other parts of the world and you will find that the food is typically grass feed and free range because that is a cheaper way to raise the animals when corn is not subsidized. So when you buy some chicken breasts in Tortolla you get something comparable to the high quality food we pay a premium for at our local Stop N Shop not the Purdue crap you get on sale.

Oh, and if cooking and eating lobster on a sailboat is a messy thing, you're doing it wrong.

Sorry for my tirade.
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Old 27-02-2014, 15:37   #17
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Re: eating "local"

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Oh, and if cooking and eating lobster on a sailboat is a messy thing, you're doing it wrong.

I think eating lobster at a restaurant is messy. But doesn't stop me from doing it
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Old 27-02-2014, 15:39   #18
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Re: eating "local"

Eating local, or "locavores" is nothing to do with reducing the costs of your food. It is all about eating things that are grown, raised, caught, locally so that there are no transportation expenses and no pollution generated by shipping things long distance.

That's the only "cost" that is supposed to be reduced by eating local. The cost of pollution from energy consumption and shipping.

Eating on the cheap often will mean not eating expensive imported "gourmet" foods, but here in the States? Fresh fruit gets flown by air-freight halfway across the world, from Peru or China, to sell in the supermarkets all winter long when there's no "local" crop at all. And even with the price of air freight and jet fuel, it undersells the local product much of the time, in or out of season. Eating local wouldn't be any cheaper, it would just (in theory) save us from global warming.
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Old 27-02-2014, 15:39   #19
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Re: eating "local"

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I think eating lobster at a restaurant is messy. But doesn't stop me from doing it
On the boat, you could always eat it in your bathing suite and just go swimming after.
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Old 27-02-2014, 15:40   #20
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pirate Re: eating "local"

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Originally Posted by zeehag View Post
langosta here is essentially a tail only eating item.. buy a whole one snap off tail and cook. they run 130 pesos per kilo. 13 pesos to one dollar
buy them in restaurant, is akin to maine lobster pricing
SE U.S. too. The northern lobster is better fer sure but langosta is a decent second best. They grow HUGE here in NC offshore but still taste good. When you go to grabbing a bigass spiny lobster ya do it like ya mean it. If yer cruising in the keys, you'd be nuts not to be foraging for yourself. Yum!





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Old 27-02-2014, 15:42   #21
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Re: eating "local"

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Originally Posted by JK n Smitty View Post
On the boat, you could always eat it in your bathing suite and just go swimming after.

come on you know what the water around here is like
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Old 27-02-2014, 15:55   #22
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Re: eating "local"

Eating local is everything from buying off the vegetable truck or from a fisherman, to eating in local small restaurants. I've had some great food in 3 table hole in the walls! Ordered chicken in one place in the DR and they went out back and cut the head off the chicken right then! Second time I went I went out and watched. They had a great process, put the chicken in an old tin biscuit can with it's head sticking out. Chop it off and it doesnt fly all over making a bloody mess. Now THAT's fresh chicken!
These little places are everywhere, you just have to find them and be smart about what you try. ie: dont order a green salad in mexico. Dont order fish 600 miles from the sea! etc.
One place there was no restaurant, after asking around we were told go to miss Delilahs. So we went to her house, she motioned for us to sit down and started cooking.
Probably the best experiences I've had crusing were "eating local".
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Old 27-02-2014, 16:20   #23
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Re: eating "local"

We eat locally when we can here in Florida. We get fish and warm water lobsters ourselves. When we can't we buy from local markets that get it right from the boat including grouper, snappers, mahi, etc and of course tons of excellent shrimp.

When the CSA farms are active, we buy from them. When the farmers markets are active we buy from them. We have two growing seasons for many things down here.

Of course we don't eat everything locally, but we do what we can. For us it isn't so much about cost savings, but more about supporting local businesses and farmers and knowing where our food comes from.

In the Bahamas, eating local vegetables is tough since not much is grown there. Most everything comes from Nasau which still comes from somewhere else.

Once we start cruising more, we look forward to trying more local foods from different cultures. A lot of times it just takes talking and befriending locals.
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Old 27-02-2014, 16:36   #24
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Re: eating "local"

For us 'local' means eating what the locals do. That does indeed include a LOT of roadside stalls, dives, and BBQ's run out of the back of someone's house. A great deal of cruising and traveling in general is leaving the US, CA, or UK behind; and yes, we do often enjoy this stews and pots of pho made by grandmothers in small tents (and love it!) In the Western Carrib it's amazing how well you can dine if you shop at the mercado and not the fancy supermarket and ask taxi drivers and dive masters where they eat (not where they send their clients). As an example, at a nice restaurant, the 'comida corrida', sort of a large blue plate special, is about 40 peso's ($4US) on Isla Muheres. It's a full meal with fish or meat, rice, beans, veggie, and a drink. Being local is just that; doing as the local do (and eat). When in Rome (or the River Dulce)!
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Old 27-02-2014, 17:07   #25
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Re: eating "local"

I think there are two aspects and sometimes they are combined into one discussion. First, is the actual eating local. Occasionally you'll find a local specialty that is less expensive than it was at home. And often locally grown fruits and vegetables. Breads sometimes too. But if you eat the same types of foods, your savings will be minimal. One thing less, one more. So eating locally is often finding the food that is less expensive there. It's a bit like shopping multiple groceries and buying one item at a grocery because it's on a big sale.

The other part is eating on board. I don't think many people realize how much they eat out when on land. Some don't much but most do more than they think. It's not just large meals. It's the coffee on the way or stopping by the convenience store. It's driving through fast food for breakfast or lunch. It all adds up. Most cruisers eat out infrequently and, most of the time when they do, they eat at moderately priced restaurants. They're more aware.

I don't know about others but I've also found I tend to eat smaller meals on the boat. I'm active but I don't stuff myself. And, I think cruisers throw less away. Maybe because they don't want to deal with the trash. But they put even small pieces back in the refrigerator for a snack or another meal. We tend to eat lighter foods when on the boat.

However, to get down to the food costs some report here, we'd have to drastically change our eating habits and we have no plans for that.
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