This holiday season, Americans are expected to spend more than $650 billion dollars! Local First Arizona is asking residents to consider spending those dollars with local businesses, helping to build and strengthen our own communities right here in Arizona. According to Kimber Lanning, Founder and Director of Local First AZ, “By shifting holiday spending towards local businesses and keeping the dollars in our local economy, we take control of our state’s economic future through supporting our fellow neighbors in creating entrepreneurial opportunities and jobs in our local communities.”
To encourage shopping locally this holiday season, Local First Arizona has organized The Buy Local Month Campaign to create more awareness for Arizona-based businesses. Buy Local Month runs November 25th-January 1st, 2017, and highlights local small businesses and their respective holiday promotions. “This campaign is about building an Arizona economy that works for everyone”, continued Lanning. “By keeping our dollars local, we invest in an Arizona in which all Arizonians can prosper, and we’re all proud to call home.”
So, what does shopping local accomplish for our community?
1. Positively impacts your local economy – When you buy locally, a higher percentage of those transacted dollars remains here - up to four times more than when you purchase from a national vendor. This, in turn, spurs a growth in the number of local businesses and jobs. In addition, a higher percentage of tax dollars are funneled right back into the local community.
2. Decreases the impact to the environment – Every year the United States ships and transports an estimated $2.2 trillion worth of products from more than 150 countries. Accounting for an annual fuel consumption of 11 billion gallons and accompanies CO2 pollution, shipping products produces approximately 25% of our global C02 emissions. Clearly there’s room for improvement. Furthermore, Industrial level manufacturing accounts for approximately 50% of pollution in the United States. According to eLocal, it was found that if there was a 10% shift to locally sourced meats/produce, it would result in the annual reduction of 310,000 gallons of fuel as well as reduced CO2 production of 7.3 million lbs. Other analyses even found a positive correlation between a higher concentration of small businesses in a community, and a higher level of population health.
3. Builds a closer and stronger community – Buying locally ensures a greater investment – both social and economic – in our local communities by increasing jobs and keeping more money flowing through local economies. Shopping local also has an effect in strengthening community relationships. Local businesses are more likely to share common interests with you, and are therefore more likely to contribute towards local causes and the betterment of your neighborhood.
To learn more about Local First Arizona, and the efforts they are making to promote local businesses, visit www.localfirstaz.com, or take advantage of one of our 'Buy Local Month' promotions and request a complimentary evaluation with one of our solar experts today!