Eating Seasonally and Locally

September 9, 2015

With summer time slowly coming to an end, it’s time to start thinking about the seasonality of many fruits and vegetables. Do you know what’s in season this month? According to USA Today Travel, the foods you should buy in September are pears and sweet potatoes. But what are the benefits of buying local and seasonal produce?


Support the Local Food Economy

Seasonal eating supports your local North Carolina food economy. There are many resources out there that encourage the consumer to make more locally conscious choices such as the NC 10% Campaign. By pledging to spend 10 percent of your existing food dollars locally you can make a big difference in the sustainable food industry. They track your progress and you’ll be able to see your impact statewide. Supporting local and sustainable businesses and farmers will help your community in many aspects.

North Carolina has many great farmer’s markets that offer organic seasonal food grown by local farmers. NC FarmFresh provides a fantastic overview and many other helpful information to connect you with farms, roadside farm markets, and farmers markets throughout North Carolina. Not only does it help you with your local fruits and vegetable needs, it also assists you in finding the freshest flowers, herbs and even Christmas trees and ornamental plants.


Save Money and Eat Fresher

Another benefit of seasonal eating is the cost aspect. If you buy seasonal produce you can be sure to save money while getting fresher food at the same time! Out of season foods are usually priced way higher due to higher costs in shipping and producing which are being passed on to the consumer.

Ideal Home Garden has a neat infographic on their website that highlights fruits and vegetables and the right time to pick and consume them:



Environmental Benefits

If you pick up your food at your local farmers market you can be sure that the miles it had to travel are kept to a minimum. Waste produced with packaging is reduced, and fuels used for transport are lower. Grow your own food if you have the opportunity and reduce your carbon footprint even more. Use it as a teaching opportunity for your children or just enjoy the fact that you can pick your own produce from your backyard. Learn more about starting a home garden from the NC Cooperative Extension.