With an increasingly urbanized population, awareness
of when and where various foods are produced has dwindled. Imports from
around the world ensure that supermarket shelves look the same week in
the seasons aims
to promote an understanding of food seasons. Each week we list the seasonal
foods that are at their peak, and share enlightening facts, useful tips
and enticing recipe ideas picked from the web and our favourite books.
Fruit and vegetables make up a large number of the foods
we focus on, but seafood and meat are also featured. Given the
climatic differences across North America we do not attempt a comprehensive
of all local foods but instead focus on the main seasonal produce from
across the region, whether that be Californian pomegranates or kohlrabi
from Quebec. See food seasons for
an explanation of how the seasons indicated relate to areas of North
America, and refer to the incredibly useful Eat
Well Guide for links to state-by-state
listings of seasonal food.
There are a number of good reasons to eat more local,
to reduce the energy (and associated CO2
emissions) needed to grow and transport the food we eat
to avoid paying a premium for food that is scarcer
or has travelled a long way
to support the local economy
to reconnect with nature's cycles and the passing
but, most importantly, because
We feel that it is important to consider the environmental
impact of our food choices – such as food miles (the distance
food travels, or more importantly the energy consumed, in getting it from
place of production to our table) - but we don't advocate denying the
pleasures of imports not widely grown in North America, such as pineapples
and bananas. Indeed, buying imported food can help make a much needed
contribution to developing countries' economies (although you may want
to check out the food's fair trade credentials if you want to be sure
that producers aren’t being screwed).
We do, however, think it’s a bit silly to buy asparagus
flown in from South America, or lamb shipped from New Zealand, when for
many weeks or months of the year you can feast on far superior native
versions - often at a lower cost financially as well as environmentally.
And whenever a particular ingredient goes out of season, you can guarantee
that another delicious food has come back into season to tempt us all.
the seasons is about enjoyment not abstinence.
But people who are interested in food quality and have an awareness of
when certain ingredients are at their best will, quite naturally, end
up eating MORE of the foods in season and LESS of those shipped half-way
around the world.
Of course even when a food is in season its quality can
vary dramatically. Food produced locally, e.g. bought from a farmers’
market, is likely to be a lot fresher than its supermarket equivalent. Meat
produced with respect for the animals concerned will inevitably be far
superior to intensively-reared animals that are likely to have spent pitiful
lives in abhorrent conditions. See other
resources for pointers to some excellent sources of further information
on these subjects.
We hope you have as much fun using the site as we have
putting it together. Visit the site every week and you’ll be kept
up-to-date with which foods are best NOW, making it easy to buy and eat
seasonally. And if you have any comments,
questions or suggestions please get in touch at:
So say goodbye to monotonous, mediocre meals and discover
the world of sublime and sensational seasonal foods.