I’ve lived in Spain and Portugal for the last eight years. Small, local shops specialising in fruit and veg, bakeries and butchers, even though I’m vegan, are still very popular. Most produce tends to be grown in small allotments and gardens within the district, giving locals who grow food a little extra income.
People still show loyalty to the little shops on the corner. Some say we are a little behind the times. I say we are doing things the right way. Even chain supermarkets and stores tend to much smaller than in the UK and USA:.
I lived in Porto for 18 months and my local greengrocers used to have a delightful stock of “ugly” fruit and veg, as it’s come to be called. All out of shape and imperfect. From double kiwis in the shape of a heart, strawberries like butterflies, knobbly potatoes and crooked carrots, I loved to pick the oddest-shaped fruit and veg that I could find. I like the unusual, shall we say. I thought they were beautiful. Yes, they sometimes took a little more effort to peel, but the joy of laughing at the strange shapes was worth the trouble.
I guess you don’t see much by the way of “ugly” fruit and vegetables in your average store like Walmart in the US or Asda in the UK. Someone, somewhere, once dictated that fruit and vegetables needed to be a perfect shape to be edible which means that “ugly” fruit and vegetables are sometimes thrown away for fear of offending our sensitive souls. What a waste, my friends. What a waste of Mother Earth’s precious resources.
I imagine you’ll probably have a store close by who don’t care for such silly rules. Instead, they stock the weird and the wonderful of all “ugly” fruits and vegetables. We need more people to go buy “ugly” fruit and vegetables and laugh at the funny yet beautiful shapes. Perhaps your children might like the strange shapes, too, which might encourage them to eat their fruit and vegetables.
I´m guessing that “ugly” fruit and veg costs a little less, too, even if it all tastes the same. Silly rules can be of benefit if you know where to shop.
Why consume “ugly” fruits and vegetables? You’ll help to stop wasting Mother Earth’s precious resources, for one. More than likely support a small business keep up and running and save yourself a penny or two.
“Ugly” fruit and vegetables are much more beautiful, my friends. Let´s not let the silly rules of supermarkets dictate what we can and cannot eat.
(c) Samantha Wilson 2019. All Rights Reserved,