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40 Day Lent Challenge: Can One Survive on Philly Products?
Philly

40 Day Lent Challenge: Can One Survive on Philly Products?

Buy local products from Philadelphia for 40 day challenge Confession: When I was supposed to give up something for Lent growing up, I failed miserably. (Sorry Mom & Dad!)  Whether it was chocolate or swearing, I caved at some point.

Instead of failing again at a petty sacrifice, I decided to make a 40-day commitment in 2012 that could make an environmental impact.  Some of my potential options… “Going vegan for 40 days”? Overdone.  (Plus, many people are vegan by choice… like the Skinny Bitches, LA & this Team Vegan Philly.  It would be like one of my friends saying “Guess what! I’m going eco-friendly for 40 days.” Yawn.)  Zero-waste household? The Johnsons have already documented their transformation.

So, I decided to go back to my roots… My 40 day challenge is to only purchase products that are Philly local. Since I was born local, it fits that I should only support local products.  Especially if it’s only for 40 days.  Easy, right?

We’ll find out.  Here are a few of the rules I created:

  • Any new consumer products (Food, wardrobe, cleaning, etc) must be sourced within a 75 mile radius of my home.  If it’s not from that radius, I am not allowed to purchase it.
  • Food: Since I’m trying to clean up my fridge/freezer anyway, I’m allowed to use up products previously purchased.  Otherwise, winter farmers markets & Whole Foods it is!
  • Eating out/Shopping: I must inquire to find where products are sourced.  Biggest Challenge: Finding a locally-sourced Mexican restaurant for my Mexican-food eating club...
  • Exceptions: Although I typically do not take unnecessary medicines (Advil, Tylenol, etc) some medications/prescriptions, or treatments may be exempt.
  • Toiletries/etc: If there is something that I typically use that MUST be disposable (i.e. toilet paper, feminine products, etc) – I will switch to the most sustainable OR item with the least amount of waste after.
  • Since things are being purchased locally, I will try to reduce my impact of packing/carbon footprint where possible.
  • If I don’t’ “need” it and it’s not local, I’m not buying it.
  • To make you my witness, I will document my trials & tribulations weekly on Green Philly Blog.  There will be times I have to make choices (sustainable created VS least amount of waste) and will need to review the overall picture.  I’ll document details such as the price difference of products (what is available vs. Philly-based products) and ease of access.

Readers, what are the biggest challenges you foresee for my 40-day dependency on Philadelphia products & producers?  Feel free to leave your comments, questions & criticisms below OR to greenphillyblog@gmail.com

If you’re giving anything up for 40 days, feel free to tell us that too!

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Julie Hancher
Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake. View all posts by Julie Hancher

2 thoughts on “40 Day Lent Challenge: Can One Survive on Philly Products?

  1. Great challenge! I’m excited to read about your journey. I wanted to ask you if you buy your electricity locally. A new campaign was just launched called ChoosePAWind(.com) to get more PA residents to purchase renewable power within PA. If you haven’t done so, this is a great way to make a difference and is super easy.

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