If you’ve ever tasted fruit or vegetables and thought why they taste different than usual, It’s probably because they are in or out of season.
Supermarkets are always packed with a variety of produce from all around the world and at odd times you might notice something different, but it’s easy to forget when and how our food grows. Although it might seem like everything is at its best quality all year round, it certainly differs throughout the seasons.
Seasonal eating may seem like a new trend, but it’s the norm for older generations. The term seasonal eating is quite simple- it’s eating food at the same time that it is grown locally. The whole purpose is to shorten the time the fresh food you want from the ground gets to your plate.
You might ask why? Here’s some of the benefits:
Environment: Shopping local that being from farmers markets or local farmers means that there is usually way less packaging on the item, it doesn’t have to come a long way meaning it has less of a carbon footprint and less energy is needed to transport food in fridges. By eating local seasonal foods, you can decrease the amount of environmental costs and feel better about eating it as you know where and who grew it.
Nutrition– When produce is picked before it is fully ripe it affects its nutritional value. So, others are picked too early or they can spoil easier because of the transport time. Eating seasonal means that you are getting the best taste possible and the best nutritional benefits from it and they taste much better.
Cost Effective– When local produce is in season it’s often much cheaper than if you try to get it during other times of the year. There can also be different varieties of the same produce. If you shop local it also means it doesn’t need to travel far meaning the cost will go down.
It supports your community: when you buy food from a big supermarket the [profits are divided between the retailer, grower and transporter. If you buy from your local markets the money stays in your community and supports the farmers.
So, the next time you’re going grocery shopping, google what food is in season that you can pick up from your closest farmers market. For example, you would have the maximum taste from strawberries around June, chestnuts around October, cranberries are picked when it gets a little colder so during November and December and potatoes and plums are the best in September. If you ever wondered why pumpkins are a symbol of Halloween, It could just be because they were in season.
Author: Kinga Piotrowska
Image Credit: MertDemirhan On UnsplashRGB