Of course, along with taste comes goodness. Studies have shown that vegetables such as broccoli and spinach contain different levels of vitamin C depending on the season they are grown in. When grown in their “natural” season, vegetables produce more of the vitamins and nutrients that we eat them for.
The same has also been found for animal products. In 1997, the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in London found that the nutrient content of cow's milk in summer was different from that produced in the winter.
Summer milk was higher in beta-carotene, while winter milk contained more iodine. The Ministry attributed these differences to the cows’ diets and the fact that during the winter they would eat more salt-preserved foods.
Support your local farmers
Your local growers and farmers are busy all year round. Just because you don’t see their products on the shelves, doesn’t mean they aren’t working. When you shop for seasonal goods, you’re buying locally and supporting your community. But when you buy foods that have to travel, all the profits the growers might have seen are swallowed up in transportation costs.
Help the environment
The further your food has to travel, the larger the carbon footprint it leaves. Most of our fruit and veg is imported, but by buying locally-grown seasonal foods we can reduce our carbon emissions, help our community and eat tastier food.
A pleasant side effect of eating what's in season is that you get a broader variety of foods in your diet. When you shop locally, you have a wonderful opportunity to discover new foods and new recipes. By eating seasonally, you naturally adopt a shift in the foods you eat; your diet shifts with the seasons. During the warmer months, you eat lighter foods and then heavier foods in the colder winter months.
Fruits and vegetables in season
So how can you tell which foods are in season? One way is to keep an eye on the price. Food which is in season will also be more abundant, so supermarket prices will be lower.
If you need any more help, we put together a table of some foods and when they come into season.