Do you know what we love the most? Like really love?
That feeling that you get strolling through the farmers market on a warm Saturday morning talking to the farmers about their animals, crops, and products. There is nothing like that!
Well, good news folks! The farmers markets are back. They are back, baby!
Often times people tell us "oh I eat organic so it has to be healthy..."
Well, let's be real. Buying organic is better than not buying organic, but it doesn't equal health.
Think about it like this - buying organic apples or red bell peppers from Panama doesn't actually mean that much in terms of the quality of the produce.
To make sure the produce isn't spoiled before it can sit on the Whole Foods shelf, all farms that are not local have to pick their produce before they are ripe.
When produce is picked early, it doesn't have the time to mature, which is basically the time that the produce is absorbing and utilizing the nutrients from the soil into the actual plant.
This ultimately means that the amount of nutrients that the produce has is minimal compared to what it would be when buying from a local farm. Even if the animal, crop, and/or product has been certified organic, you still don't know the quality of the soil. And the quality of the soil is the direct reflection of the quality of the plant. Even with a plush, red organic apple, you have to ask, what was the soil it was grown in?
This is why we recommend as much as possible to buy from local farms and talk to your farmers! The ones that deeply care for the land will want to share that with you, so don't be bashful to ask questions. Buying organic out of season is like attempting to snow ski in the summer. The weather dictates the different activities you can do on the mountain and trying to ski during the summer doesn't sound that fun.
Well, same with eating in season. There are certain foods that we are supposed to eat during different seasons. And, by shopping at the farmer's market you are naturally going to be buying the foods that are in season because the smaller farmers don't have the capacity to have a ten million dollar greenhouse to grow tomatoes during January. Lastly, any produce that is grown overseas has to be sprayed with chemicals when crossing the border. Yes, you heard that right.
So, even if a farm is certified organic in Peru, the second the produce crosses into the U.S. it is sprayed with different chemicals to not bring any foreign bugs into the country. These chemicals are everywhere and on everything - even on organic produce!
We know that a lot of this information makes you go...what a bummer! However, there is an easy fix. Do most of your shopping at the Farmers Market!
Get to know the farmer's and ask about their farming practice. Ask about the soil. Ask about what crops they grow during what season. Ask about the fertilizer practices that they use. Just talk to them and get to know them.
Support the local people who are not funded by large corporations and deeply care for their land.
This is how you create health for yourself, your family, and the environment :)
We are going to be dropping more information on how to successfully shop at the farmer's market without breaking your bank account in the upcoming weeks.
Check out the farmers markets here in Chicago and what dates they open below!