The New York Locavore Challenge ingredient of the day is Locally Roasted Coffee. I had some trouble choosing my 5 non-local ingredients for the challenge (which in all honesty varied a bit week to week), but coffee was one I had some gripes with. Obviously there aren’t any coffee trees here in Brooklyn (shame…), but there are a number of local coffee roasters. So is it a local ingredient? It’s kind of like supporting a local bakery. All of their grains might not be sourced locally, but it’s much better to buy their bread than the mass produced supermarket brands. Or when I get my salsa from the Brooklyn Salsa company. I know all their ingredients aren’t local, but it’s better than buying from a national manufacturer.
There’s a lot of loop holes, per se, in localism. When I eat at a local mom and pop restaurant, I know not all of their ingredients are sourced locally, but I’d rather eat there than a larger food chain. At least the revenue stays locally in the community. So in short, yes, I consider my coffee local. If I were able to bring some Kona beans home from Hawaii on my own, that would be even better, but I still have another 3 years before I go back there (I might start a daily countdown soon…).