Ask a Farmer: Moms Ask Arizona Farmers & Ranchers Question #2
From Arizona Mom, Katie: How do I know I’m getting the freshest produce?
Arizona is one of the best states to celebrate fresh! We’re planting and harvesting 12 months out of the year. This means Arizona families have greater opportunities to obtain year-around fresh fruits and vegetables.
For us, this means several things to determine you’re getting the freshest produce.
- Get to know your local supermarket. Talk to the store’s produce manager. Learn about the produce they carry. Get to know the experts. The ones stalking the shelves. For example, if lettuce doesn’t feel crisp be suspicious. The experts that handle fruits and vegetables get very familiar with what feels fresh, smells great and tastes great.
- Use your senses! It’s the touch, taste, smell. How does it feel? Does it look tired?
- Plus, learn what’s in season. For example, oranges are a winter fruit that we do grow in Arizona just like Florida. So, if you’re going to buy an orange or other winter citrus during the winter months, it’s obvious you’ll be able to get it at peak freshness. Plus, if a product is at the end of the season, ask for the discount.
- Consider consistency. Is the market consistent in keeping your favorite fruits and vegetables fresh?
- Eat more fruits and veggies! This might sound simplistic, but the more you eat fruits and vegetables the more you’ll become familiar with what’s fresh and what’s tasty. Plus, your newfound knowledge of what’s in season with add to your knowledge base of all things fresh.
Advice by Jonathan and Lara Dinsmore, a produce farm family from Yuma, Arizona raising four children and feeding them lots of fruits and vegetables every meal, every day. Jonathan is also the current Yuma County Farm Bureau President.