A group that protests urban sprawl is launching an effort to encourage Iowans to “buy locally.” The “One-thousand Friends of Iowa” group has developed a locally owned business directory for a northern Des Moines neighborhood, and plans more for other communities. Spokesperson Rose Winkeler says people know where the malls are, but may not know the local businesses are around. She hopes other organizations will follow the lead of “One-thousand Friends” and develop guides to get more people to shop in locally owned stores.Winkeler says locally owned businesses return about 60 percent of profits to the local community, while less than 10 percent of the big discount stores’ profits are returned to the local community. Winkeler calls it the “tyranny of the big box store,” saying they lead to urban sprawl as that’s where they build. “One-thousand Friends of Iowa” plans to print local business directories for Jefferson, Greenfield, Decorah, Mason City, Sibley, Indianola, Des Moines, West Des Moines, and Urbandale.
You are here: / / Group urges Iowans to buy local