What adventure have they had before landing on your plate?
Updated: Jul 2, 2021
What adventure have they had before landing on your plate? Have you ever stopped to think about where your fruit and vegetables come from? How they reach your plate? Have you ever wondered how they grow, what climate they grow in, in which season they are at their best?
Some say that we are all creatures of habit – would you agree?‘I like chopped banana on my cereal’ or ‘blueberries in my yoghurt’, or ‘cucumber sticks in my packed lunch’. Young Climate Warriors need to be brave and adventurous. To help cut our carbon emissions we need to eat ‘seasonally’ when we can – this means maybe replacing the imported blueberries or bananas with British strawberries, blackberries or even gooseberries (how adventurous are you - have you tried them?)– or learning to like spinach and courgettes that grow really easily in the UK summer, instead of cucumbers that prefer growing in a warmer climate.
Your challenge this week is to work out the countries of origin of the fruit and vegetables you eat this week, and then ask your parent / carer if you could try to eat more local, seasonal produce.
Don’t forget to let your voice be heard by HITTING THE RED BUTTON when you’ve completed the challenge – an ‘I am a Young Climate Warrior’ badge will be making its way to you towards the end of term via your school (as long as you’ve told us which school you go to).
What do you know about food miles? Food miles relate to how far food has travelled to reach your plate – but they are only one part of the carbon footprint story. There are times when food from further afield may have a lower carbon footprint than food grown locally – depending on the carbon emissions related to the cultivation, storage and processing required. The use of heated greenhouses, high levels of fertilizers or pesticides, farm machinery, cold storage containers and packaging can substantially increase a product’s carbon footprint. What is however definitely the case is eating local produce when it is in season will help you lower your carbon footprint – and seasonal food that doesn’t have to travel far will be fresher, probably tastier, and have a higher nutritional content!
Wondering which vegetables are ‘in season’ in the UK in June – how many of these can you eat over the next few weeks? Asparagus, broad beans, broccoli, courgettes, fennel, french beans, lettuce and salad leaves, pak choi, peas, radishes, rocket, runner beans, spinach, watercress, wild nettles. For a comprehensive list of seasonal fruit and vegetables – you could look at http://eattheseasons.co.uk/june.php or you might prefer a much simpler picture version produced by Foodafactoflife.
Remember to HIT THE RED BUTTON when you have completed this challenge!