Food in Season

Sunday 29th April 2012

Supermarkets are at it again pushing food out of season for their own profit.

There were a couple of food related stories this week, one of which you will all have seen no doubt – but another you may not have.

As always my focus was on the least obvious one.

The big news plastered all over the newspapers, internet sites and TV & radio news were the comments from health campaigners that having our Olympics sponsored by McDonalds and Coca-Cola wasn’t such a fabulous idea.

Well paint me pink and call me Margaret! That is a stunning piece of logic which should have occurred to the Olympic Committee as well.

Surely any event celebrating human achievement and well being shouldn’t be a billboard for bad, or dangerous food – however money talks.

This sponsorship will ensure that all of the athletic excellence on show in London is completed with a backdrop of sickening corporate logos and strap lines.

Subliminal messages will be hard wired straight to the brains of all viewers, whether they realise it or not.

In an act of sponsorship justification Coke said it would be heavily promoting its zero sugar option rather than the full-on product. Oh good, so just something packed with artificial sweeteners instead, and you know what I think about them.

But like I say, this wasn’t the story which particularly caught my eye.

The really interesting news item was buried deep within the health section, rather than being the front page financial news it should have been.

Do you realise that our hard working farmers and growers are being forced to produce local food out of season?

Just wander along the aisles of the local food emporium and you will see British Strawberries and Raspberries already on the shelves.

I may have started my April Fool’s day piece with a made up story about people in Dorset harvesting Strawberries in March – but I hadn’t dreamt that it might be true.

It looks like the joke was on me after all!

The great food con

Big supermarkets employ specialist buyers to source and procure their fresh produce.

These chaps are the equivalent of financial whizz kids in the City – and wreak the same sort of havoc on our economy, country and daily lives.

Right now they have decided that there is a massive premium to be had for getting a British soft fruit onto their shelves.

Of course their PR people say that they are supporting growers and allowing them to ‘innovate’ production to take advantage of year round demand.

The reality is that they are just lining their own pockets by still paying the growers a pittance for greenhouse forced fruit.

In addition they hold a commercial gun to their head by saying that unless they comply to these unfair demand then no contracts will be awarded for fruit in season, after all when we have plenty so does Europe and they can buy from there as cheaply.

As consumers we also suffer because this unseasonal fruit is always lower in taste, spoils easily and doesn’t have the levels of vitamins and minerals which make them so good for us.

This is all totally unnecessary.

Before Christmas I published my latest book called ‘Season to Taste’ which offered a much more realistic and ethical solution to making the most of good food, especially that which is grown naturally and is therefore at its best.

This book is more than a cookbook it is the story of how everyone can utilise food when it is at its nutritional peak, and cheapest.

The opportunity to make a meal from something which can be grown in your own garden or bought from a local farm is at the heart of why I wrote the book.

But it is more than that – there are some basic truths about our food that we all need to know.

Put at its simplest our food can either promote health or place us at risk of exacerbating known problems.

So, I spent a lot of time researching just how we can address all manner of issues just by eating the right things.

At the back of the book is a comprehensive look up table which shows which foods can be eaten safely for different conditions, which season they are available in and which recipes make use of them.

Just those few pages alone are a fantastic resource for everyone who is concerned about staying healthy – Click here to find out more.

Put a real spring into spring time

If we are prepared to invest a little time in researching and using seasonal food then the rewards are threefold;

- We massively reduce the miles that our food travels. It is estimated that upto 25% of all HGV traffic on our roads is carrying food, plus the cost of flying exotic fruits from other parts of the world is over 170 times more expensive than sending them by boat. Much of this rush and panic could be saved by just selecting the right food at the right time of year.

- Our food will taste better. In order to protect food when it is hauled around the world it gets sprayed and packaged which affects its quality, in addition all foods loose their vitamins and minerals the longer they are stored and this affects our benefit from eating them. Finally the breeders of commercial vegetables and fruit have developed varieties with thicker skins, less juice and a more uniform size and shape which make moving and packing them easier.

- We stop the big supermarkets destroying our food economy. By skewing the activities of the growers our natural ecology is being affected, as well as the countryside. Acres upon acres of greenhouses or poly tunnels cover more of country as our sons of the soil try to create the artificial conditions needed to fool their crops into producing earlier. The real value of the harvest is constantly being undermined by the pinstripe suited buyers who play the hardball with individual producers. If we turn our backs on the unseasonal or imported produce we will force the power back with the grower – and that has to be right.

Season to Taste wasn’t written to compete with the celebrity chef cook books, it was written to support our natural food producers.

It was designed to make the best possible use of high quality foodstuffs to promote your health, and help deal with a range of conditions.

I do not believe myself capable of producing restaurant quality dishes, but I can show you how to make a dinner party to impress even the most hardened foodie; and all from the cheapest and freshest bounty which can be found in every shop, supermarket and food hall.

Have a look at the book on Amazon – they’ve made some of the pages available to read here

If you shied away from buying the book before Christmas now is the time to do yourself a real favour – and everyone else around you.

The last chance for a REAL BIG saving

And as a real incentive to act quickly I am also going to strike a blow for the little man.

In the budget we saw a huge increase in postal charges, and I’m not happy about that because it means that you good people will have to pay much more for the same service – after all they aren’t promising to speed things up any.

So, for May only I will not be increasing my charges. Every order placed through the Good Life Letter, and at the Good Life Shop will carry the pre budget post charges.

I can only afford to cover this offer for one month so please don’t delay. This book is a heavy beast as it is 240 pages and a proper posh hardback cover so make sure you save a packet on your parcel!

Good food, made simply and in support of the natural order of life – just click here NOW

These two news stories show how big food companies and retailers are increasingly dominating our lives and controlling what we eat, it is time to fight back.

 

Yours, as always

 

 

 

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