CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- According to Wikipedia, a "locavore" is a person interested in eating food that is locally produced.
I have another definition for the term: West Virginians.
Tomorrow, more than 150,000 Mountain State residents will take to the woods, each hoping to bring home the ultimate in locally produced food - venison from a freshly killed white-tailed deer.
If the season goes as expected, hunters will carry home close to 5 million pounds of high-protein, low-fat, antibiotic-free, steroid-free meat, and almost all of it will have come practically from their backyards.
Curtis Taylor, wildlife resources chief for the state Division of Natural Resources, chuckles at the idea that environmentally conscious people throughout the country are embracing the so-called "locavore lifestyle.
"I was at a meeting recently where they talked about this 'hot new trend,'" Taylor recalled. "I just busted out laughing. I said, 'Shoot, I've been a locavore my entire life, and so have thousands of West Virginians.' "
Taylor, a native of McDowell County, grew up eating squirrels, rabbits, grouse and deer harvested from the hills near Welch.
"I still eat that way," he said. "I like to put at least four deer in the freezer every year, plus a turkey or two and several messes of squirrels."
The locavore movement sprang from people's desire to lessen their environmental "footprint." They reckoned that if they ate food grown within 50 to 100 miles of their homes, they'd lessen the amount of fuel used to truck groceries from place to place.