Many have adopted a lifestyle of eating seasonally by buying and eating foods that are naturally grown and harvested at the time of the year. You can find seasonal foods on Sustainable Table’s Food Guide. Simply select your state, the month or the type of produce and you can easily find out if its in season.
Eating seasonally is more than just a trendy food movement—there are significant benefits to eating foods that are available in their peak.
It can save you money. Foods in season are at the peak of their supply, which means your cost at the register is lower—it’s basic supply and demand.
The foods are the perfect ripeness. Since in-season produce is harvested in its peak season, you are buying the ingredient when it is most natural, freshest and ripe. Buying the same ingredients when they are off-season, you can notice a visible difference in the quality.
You support local, sustainable farmers. The same reasons that keep the cost of seasonal food down is what drives quality up. Harvested produce typically ends up in retailers closer to where it is grown so it stays fresh. This factor has led to a huge support in buying local, which helps local farmers and businesses stay afloat.
Your diet has variety all throughout the year. By eating seasonal foods, you get a broad variety of flavors throughout the year. This can be a great way to broaden your palate and explore new dishes.
You eat a more well-balanced diet. In-season foods are located on the perimeter of the grocery store, where the whole foods are typically located, such as fruits and vegetables, lean meats and seafood, whole grains and certain types dairy. As a rule, these are the best places to shop when buying groceries.
While you can pick up seasonal ingredients at your local grocer, farmer’s markets are a option as well. To find out what’s harvested seasonally in your area, go to Local Harvest’s website to find farmers’ markets near you.