With the UK in lockdown, staying healthy has become imperative, and one way to get essential vitamins whilst remaining indoors is by eating five a day. Knowing what is in season and choosing locally sourced produce also means shoppers can be sure to pack in the most nutrients, as those which have travelled fewer miles will be fresher and of higher quality.
However, research by The Mushroom Bureau, a partnership between local farmers, sellers and growers, has revealed that many Brits are unaware of just how far their food travels, with three quarters of the nation admitting they never check where their food comes from1 .
In response, The Mushroom Bureau has released the Seasonal Vegetable League Table, which illustrates that understanding seasonality, and how far food travels can make eating freshly grown, locally sourced vegetables achievable.
Using the nation’s 10 most popular vegetables2 , the Seasonal Vegetable League Table highlights how two in five (40 percent) everyday veggies are available all year round. From mushrooms to potatoes to carrots and even green leaves, eating seasonally can deliver an array of healthy options.
Topping the league is the much-loved mushroom, a popular breakfast and dinner component. The versatile ingredient is produced by British & Irish farmers 365 days a year and available in local supermarkets, travelling minimal miles to reach the kitchen table.
Sitting at the bottom end of the league are popular vegetables like peppers and broccoli as well as avocados, which can travel a minimum of 1,119 miles from Spain and as far as 6,263 from Peru and 3,355 from Israel, before reaching the kitchen table.
With plant-based consumption continuing to rise and over 60% of shoppers3 actively looking to eat more vegetable-based meals on a weekly basis, the Seasonal Vegetable League Table will help people consume more consciously.
A spokesperson from the Mushroom Bureau commented: “Understanding seasonal eating can help when buying the freshest, most nutritious vegetables, a little closer to home. The Seasonal Vegetable League Table brings to life just where our vegetables come from, when out of season and helps people support local farmers who produce high quality veg right on your doorstep. Swap your Sunday morning smashed avocado for some delicious mushrooms and not only support local businesses but play a part in reducing your carbon footprint by choosing lower food mile options.”
The Seasonal Vegetable Table has been created to help educate consumers on when the nation’s favourite vegetables are in season as well as the impact shopping closer to home has on our carbon footprint, as well as supporting local suppliers along the way.