Tuesday, July 13, 2010

How far does your food travel?

I suppose I didn't used to think about it. I just perused the produce, picked what I wanted, visited the butcher and chose the least fatty cut of beef. I thought I was being healthy. I ate fewer carbs because I'd done some research on how that could make me gain weight. I started eating real butter and gave up margarine. I started avoiding sugar substitutes and began scrutinizing labels. Every year, I learn more.

This year...one goal is to avoid imports (of all sorts) and choose local food options. This isn't always easy (or possible, for some things like spices and seasonings). For example, I'm not giving up olive oil, and since I haven't seen any local olive trees, I think it's safe to deduce that I will have to continue getting that from across the water. But...I'm sad to say, that while shopping at Sunny Farms the other day, I came across a beautiful bin of plump Brussels sprouts. They looked perfect for dinner, and since we haven't had them in a while, they'd have been a welcome change. But, gasp, lo-and-behold...the sign above designated them "a product of Mexico". Doh!

So, I had to pass them by and settle for some scrumptious looking bib lettuce for a salad. Not as exciting. Especially since our local Brussels sprouts are so yummy. Guess, I will just have to wait until they are in season. Besides, a natural consequence of eating in season is that it sure makes it easier to support your local farms...or you could think of it the other way around: supporting your local farms naturally leads to a season appropriate diet.

So for now, it's green beans (which I'm not a huge fan of). And there will be strawberry picking and freezer jam this week.

If you're at all wondering why I worry about the travel distance of my food (other than supporting local farms and such), check out this link:

Food miles: How far your food travels has serious consequences for your health and the climate

Counting down the days...like a little kid...until "writing camp"!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Actually there are buttload or more olive and olive oil producers in California. It does not have to be from the Mediterranean.

Here is the website of the California Olive Oil Council