Ten Terrific Ideas for Buying Local this Holiday Season

By: Russell Redding, Secretary of Agriculture

December 08, 2016

Thanksgiving is behind us for another year, and we have another few weeks before setting those New Year’s Eve resolutions. In between, though, we have the hustle and bustle of the holiday shopping season. And in this season, it’s the perfect time to support local Pennsylvania businesses, particularly those that proudly carry the PA Preferred logo.

PA Preferred is the official state branding program used to identify locally-sourced agricultural products made and grown right here in our commonwealth. By supporting local businesses and those carrying PA Preferred products, you are supporting the local economy in the most direct way.

Throughout the year, I have the opportunity to visit a number of PA Preferred members. Each offers something unique – a piece made with pride in Pennsylvania that you cannot find in many other places. Whether you’re shopping for holiday gifts or for a celebratory dinner with the people you love, the PA Preferred brand ensures that your purchase will be something special for someone special. Check out some of the great products made right here in Pennsylvania.

Holiday brunch with your favorite folks:
  1. Eggs and bacon, ham and sausage, fried potatoes or hash
  2. Breads, muffins, donuts and pastries
  3. Cheese, butter and yogurt
  4. Apples and cranberries, peach and blackberry preserves
  5. Fresh-roasted coffee, tea, milk and juice
Gifts for giving and receiving:
  1. Gift card or dinner at a PA Preferred restaurant
  2. Wearables – scarves and mittens, sweaters and vests
  3. Home accessories — baskets and blankets, candles and cards
  4. Lotions and potions — lip balm, soaps and salves
  5. Super snacks — popcorn and pretzels, dried fruit and chocolate

Before you start your holiday shopping list – for your loved ones or yourself – take a look at all the places you can buy PA Preferred products, by clicking here to view a searchable map. You know that the products are local when you see the blue and yellow PA Preferred logo, and you know that your gift will be treasured because it was made or grown locally.

After the holidays, you’ll have a special opportunity to stock up on many of your favorite PA Preferred products at the 101st Pennsylvania Farm Show (January 6 – 14, 2017). Stop by the PA Preferred Marketplace to try and to buy products made by PA businesses, including EPIC Pickles, Red Hawk Premium Peppers and Oregon Dairy.

Since the early days of Penn’s Woods, we’ve been blessed by hard-working farmers, artisans and others who feed us, clothe us, and bring beauty into our lives and our homes. When you shop at local stores and purchase PA Preferred products, you are honoring their efforts, celebrating their craftsmanship, and supporting your local economy. This holiday season, I hope you will look for the PA Preferred logo when making your gift-buying decisions and consider supporting the farmers and businesses that help to make Pennsylvania such a diverse and dynamic state.

From my family to yours, best wishes for the holiday season!

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