The Season of Abundance:
Welcome to the July Produce Guide!
Today, I am super excited to share our guide to July produce (Northern Hemisphere, of course!). Here at WonderMamas, we are dedicated to inspiring and educating our followers on everything sustainable, nutritious, and delicious. One of the big first steps that we took in our environmentally conscious produce shopping was to shop IN SEASON!
Some amazing benefits of shopping in season:
In season produce is fresher and tastes so much better (you will notice the difference right away if you are new to shopping in season!). The fruits are sweeter, and the produce has reached its “perfectly ripe” stage. When we purchase out of season, the produce is picked BEFORE fully ripe and ripens in a cardboard box that is then shipped to various states or countries (usually across oceans!). The produce is also usually packed in refrigerator containers which greatly reduce flavour.
Fruit and vegetables that are picked at the perfectly ripe stage are much more nutritious than those who are picked early and ripened in artificial surroundings (box to refrigeration to heat rooms which lowers the phyto-nutrient content). Produce that is purchased in season is more likely to be fresher, consumed closer to harvesting and higher in nutritional value, some anti-oxidants such as Vitamin C, folate and carotenes will rapidly decline when stored for periods of time.
In season means abundance. If apples are in season, you bet your dollar that farmers are literally SWIMMING in apples. We live near to apple orchards and we have seen this in real time – it’s quite funny. When farmers have an abundance of a fruit or vegetable, the price will (almost always) go down. We purchase the produce from our local farmers, we also cut out the shipping/transportation costs. When we purchase food that is out of season (or just not grown in our country), we are adding in a LOT of cost (that can hurt our wallet and the environment). Think of all of the shipping, transportation, and handling that goes into avocados? It’s quite intense.
So often we head to the grocery store and simply add the produce to our carts without thinking of the ridiculously long journey that it took to get to our hands. Where is the farm located? What are the regulations? How about transportation regulations? What about heavy metal? Hygiene practices? So many questions to be answered and most companies do not give these answers so freely. Best to stay in season, stay local, and support what Mother Nature has to offer you.
Mother Nature is Wise:
Speaking of Mother Nature, did you know that “In Season” is really just code word for “What Nature has intended for you to eat at this exact moment”? Haha. This is how I like to think of in season produce. Mother Nature is way smarter than any of us, I promise you, and she has given the gift of certain produce at certain times to aid us in our nutrition! Just think about it: Winter is full of yummy citrus which boosts our Vitamin C content for flu/sick season. Summer fruits are FULL of extra beta-carotenes and other carotenoids that help protect us against sun damage!
If you have made it this far on the list, then you know how environmentally friendly it is to shop in season (locally preferred). The constant demand on overseas farmers, shipping, transportation, and the heavy pressure for spraying those questionable sprays to keep up with thee pressure is hurting the Earth (and its inhabitants) so much.
“But, Danielle, I can’t eat in season and local ALL the time. What do I do?!”
It is so very important to understand that this is not always possible, but that simply trying your best to support local and in season as much as YOU can is worth it. By simply being conscious of where you food comes from, how far it has traveled, and what it has gone through in terms of growing/handling/ripening/refrigeration/heat, we are much better prepared to make better decisions. Just do your best!
The July Produce Guide: Veggies Galore!
- Bell Peppers
- Broad bean
- Courgette flower
- Green bean
- Early potato
- Summer Squash
- Swiss chard
The July Produce Guide: Fruit for Days!
- Black cherry
Looking for recipes that include seasonal produce?
Check out our latest Vegan Summer Recipe Guide!
Want to try your hand at juicing your seasonal produce? Check out this amazing summer juicing guide!
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