Government plea on eating local

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PEOPLE in the Borders are being urged to eat more food that is in season.

The plea comes from the Scottish Government as it stresses the advantages of fresh meat, vegetables and fruit that is produced locally.

A Holyrood food expert commented: “When it comes to taste, eating in-season is the way to eat flavoursome food with optimum nutrients, colour and crunch. It’s the easiest way to transform a diet, increase the tastiness of meals and ultimately make food more enjoyable.

“Food that’s in season is at its peak flavour and is often cheaper because it’s abundant. From month to month, there is a range of meat, fish, fruit and vegetables which are in season.”

Many people eat in season without realising it, naturally turning to Scotch lamb stews and soups in winter, eating more greens in the spring, strawberries in the summer and pumpkins in the autumn.

The spokeman went on: “Fruit and vegetables are what springs to most people’s minds when they think of in season produce, but some types of meat and fish are also seasonal. Butchers, fishmongers and the produce department at local supermarkets can help advise you on what meat or fish is in season. It is grown at its peak time, making it plentiful, abundant and often cheaper.”

Seafood is readily available at any time of year. Jess Sparks from Seafood Scotland commented: “We’re lucky to have a fantastic wealth of seafood available throughout the year, but there are some seasonal differences in fish and seafood.

“Hake is very good at the moment and is very similar to haddock and cod. Monkfish is also in season at the moment, it’s a bit more expensive but is really well-textured and meaty.

“As for shellfish, scallops and langoustines are a good seasonal produce for the spring. There is always something that’s at its peak at any time of year.”

The government says that eating more in-season produce can open up a whole host of new experiences, with the opportunity to try new things and potentially find a new favourite food.

For in-season recipes and cookery suggestions, visit www.cookscotland.co.uk/inseason