What is seasonal eating?
Different fruit and vegetables naturally grow at different times of the year as a result of changing light levels and temperatures. When a certain fruit or vegetable is not growing in the UK, for example because it is too cold, it is often imported from warmer climates instead.
Seasonal eating is simply when you buy produce according to what is naturally in season in the UK at the time, rather than buying imported produce that is not in season here.
Why eat seasonally?
You may be wondering why you should bother eating only what is in season here, when most fruit and veg is available in supermarkets all year round. As it turns out, eating seasonally is a great way to save money, help the environment and get better quality produce.
It can make your fruit and vegetable shop cheaper. You aren’t paying to cover the extra costs of importing produce from abroad, which makes production costs cheaper, resulting in a cheaper end product.
It helps to lessen the impact on the environment. Providing out-of-season produce either requires importing it from other countries – which uses a lot of extra fuel – or using extra fertilisers and additives to force fruit and vegetables to grow, which contributes to air, soil and water pollution.
You’re likely to find better quality fruit and vegetables. Seasonal fruit and veg is likely to be fresher, since it hasn’t spent an extra few days in transit from another country. Imported fruit and veg is also more likely to contain preservatives, to make up for the extra time it takes to get from farm to fridge.
It helps you get creative and try new things. Limiting yourself to only seasonal produce forces you to think a bit more creatively about the food you’re eating, which can push you into trying new things. If you can’t make your favourite meal because the ingredients aren’t in season, you’ll have to see what else you can make with more unusual ingredients!
Summer is actually a really great time to start shopping seasonally because so much is in season right now!
What fruit is in season just now?
Strawberries and raspberries dominate the supermarkets in the summer, but there are lots of other fruits in season from June to August! Fruits in season in the summer include:
- Bramley Apples – otherwise known as cooking apples
- Greengages – a personal favourite of mine; if you haven’t tried them yet, definitely keep an eye out for them!
What vegetables are in season just now?
While we tend to associate summer with fresh fruit – especially strawberries – there are plenty of vegetables available as well! Vegetables in season in summer include:
- Onions – these are easy to store so are available all year round, but they are best in the summer!
- Sprouts – nope not Brussels Sprouts, but our own Biosnacky sprouts! These are technically in season all year round because you can grow them yourself indoors and they’re ready to eat in around a week.
Where to buy seasonal produce
Supermarkets are able to provide most fruits and vegetables all year round, so this can be a good idea if you know what you’re looking for – but if you aren’t sure what’s in season, the amount of choice can be confusing.
A great idea is actually shopping at local fruit and veg markets or greengrocers (if your town has any left!). These places tend to provide locally-grown produce, meaning they are generally also in season. The staff there are likely to be extremely knowledgeable too so they can give you some great tips about the best seasonal foods.
Have a look at our recipe pages to find some tasty recipes using seasonal fruit and veg this summer!
Spiced Cauliflower and Carrot Salad
Sun-dried Tomato and Hemp Quiche
Asparagus and Pea Soup
Molkosan Fruit Smoothie