CHEFS 4 THE PLANET

THE GLOBAL INFORMATION AND SOLUTIONS NETWORK FOR SUSTAINABLE GASTRONOMY

THE GLOBAL INFORMATION AND SOLUTIONS NETWORK FOR SUSTAINABLE GASTRONOMY

Seasonal eating isn’t the same as going local – knowing the difference is vital

We all know about eating fewer animal products, or buying locally, but what about seasonality? Sophie Gallagher asks why consumers should care that you can’t naturally grow strawberries in a British winter

Fancy a bowl of fresh British strawberries for a winter breakfast and a crunchy kale salad in the height of summer? Not if you’re eating seasonally you don’t. The UK’s northern-hemisphere weather maybe ever-warming due to the global climate crisis (the last decade was the hottest on record according to the Met Office and Nasa), but that doesn’t mean we’re quite ready to replicate the growing seasons of nations on the other side of the world.

Unless you want miles of plastic polytunnels across the horticultural landscape, or artificial heating and light to encourage seeds to grow rather than wilt away, the British growing season is naturally limited. 

In spite of this, walk into any of the major supermarkets across the nation and you wouldn’t know, for example, that asparagus can only be grown in the UK for May and June, or that pears are only ready to be eaten in September. In our big-name chains, consumers have been indulged with produce from every corner of the world, 365 days a year. 

Items will often be labelled in small print with their country of origin, and perhaps are given some promotion when there is surplus at certain times of year, but shoppers are not invited to only buy the British produce that is in season or encouraged to dismiss those that are not, and instead are offered whatever our baskets (or stomachs) desire. Shipped from the far reaches of the map. 

Read the rest here: https://www.independent.co.uk/climate-change/sustainable-living/eat-seasonal-food-fruit-vegetables-b1797655.html

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