Fairest Flour

If you're claiming locavore status, make sure your flour fits the bill

We're quick to congratulate ourselves for adopting a locavore lifestyle. We buy in-season produce from the farmers' market and local, grass-fed meat from the corner butcher. But the food police would find fault with the mass-produced flour we buy; it's got a big carbon footprint that undermines our sustainable lifestyle.

Luckily, it's easy to reform your flour-sourcing habits. More mills around the country are now producing flours made exclusively from local grains. These four regional flours will shorten the food miles from field to pantry shelf:

Wild Hive Farm (Clinton Corners, New York) Bakers can buy more than 15 types of organic flour from this farm's store or at Manhattan's Union Square Greenmarket (wildhivefarm.com).

Stone-Buhr Flour Company (Spokane, Washington) Using eco-friendly practices, area family farms grow the wheat for this all-purpose, certified-sustainable flour (stone-buhr.com).

Valencia Flour Mill (Jarales, New Mexico) This company entered the grain business in the early 1920s and today sells its excellent pastry and bread flours through the La Montanita Co-op (lamontanita.coop).

Butterworks Farm (Westfield, Vermont) Farmers Jack and Anne Lazor peddle their whole-wheat flour to Vermont food co-ops and markets (butterworksfarm.com).