"According to Susan Witt, Executive Director of the E.F. Schumacher Society, "buy local" campaigns serve another function: alerting a community about gaps in the local market. This is the way product innovations get made."

"Buy Local"—you see the decal in the store window, the sign at the farmer's market, the bright, cheerful logos for Local First Arizona, Think Boise First, Our Milwaukee, and homegrown versions across the states. The apparent message is "let's-support-local-business", a kind of community boosterism. But buying close to home may be more than a feel-good, it's-worth-paying-more-for-local matter. A number of researchers and organizations are taking a closer look at how money flows, and what they're finding shows the profound economic impact of keeping money in town—and how the fate of many communities around the nation and the world increasingly depend on it.

Read more via Time Business & Money.
 
 
Locally-owned businesses return about 80% of each dollar to their community. And each dollar spent at a local business will return up to five times that amount within your community through city taxes, employees’ wages, and purchases of materials, supplies and services at other independent businesses.

Chains and franchises, on the other hand, contribute roughly 40%, and as little as 20% of sales back to your community. And many big boxes, such as Walmart or Home Depot, are given tax-incentives by local governments—costing you far more than the discounted price you think you’re paying.

Keep reading via Elephant Journal

Photo Courtesy of Local Works: Examining the impact of Local Business on the West Michigan Economy via Elephant Journal.