Shop in Season
When it comes to produce, seasonal is definitely the way to go. Here’s why:
It’s less expensive.
According to the basic law of supply and demand, abundance= lower cost. When fruits and vegetables are in season locally, they can be sold for a lower price. Purchase what’s growing now. Your wallet will thank you!
Buying fruits and vegetables at their peak of seasonality means the naturally occurring vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals are also fresh. Out-of-season produce is often shipped from thousands of miles away, losing key nutrients along the way.
Peak freshness means peak flavor! Extended shipping time can also lead to overripe, bruised produce. Choosing seasonal fruits and vegetables will increase your odds of eating locally harvested produce bursting with flavor.
Shopping seasonally is easy to do. Since retailers have a financial incentive to purchase lower-cost, seasonal produce, you can often find peak season fruits and vegetables in your local grocery store. If you would rather purchase directly from the farm, check out a local farmers market. These events give farmers the opportunity to set up booths and sell fresh produce directly to the consumer.
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) boxes are another opportunity to purchase fruits and vegetables directly from farmers. Customers can purchase a subscription for the farming season and in return receive a box of seasonal produce each week.
Wondering what’s in season this spring? Add these fruits and vegetables to your grocery list!
Looking for ways to use all of this spring bounty? Make a breakfast dairy drink using fresh strawberries and milk. For snack time, try crunchy broccoli with cucumber-yogurt dip. And for a light lunch or side serve this roasted vegetable potato salad, which calls for fresh green beans, over a bed of spinach.
Laura Marbury, MS, RD, LD