Nowadays, due to rapid global transportation and advanced preservation techniques, it is possible to buy almost any fruit or vegetable at any time of the year.
Downsides of Buying out of Season:
- Chemical preservation methods, with possible adverse health concerns, may have been used to prolong shelf life.
- Gassing may also have been used to artificially speed up ripening e.g . bananas.
- Even worse, in some countries the food may have been irradiated.
- The financial cost will be significantly higher.
- Costs to the planet, in terms of the extra pollution created in order to heat glasshouses and transport the produce thousands of kilometers, is significant.
- With some imported products, quality standards in the originating country may be suspect.
Advantages of Buying in Season:
- Few or none of the above disadvantages of buying out of season apply.
- It is more likely that you will be supporting a local grower. This is not always possible to ensure when buying in supermarkets, but can be guaranteed if buying from local produce markets.
- It is easier to obtain fruit and veges that are truly fresh (rather than well-preserved).
The Ultimate Alternative:
- Grow your own fruit & veges.
- Swap your surpluses with neighbours.