I am in favor of buying and eating fresh, locally grown and organic foods when it's affordable and available, but I live in Missouri. What are the realistic options - canning, freezing, drying foods - during the harvest months and buying non-local food the rest of the time?
It sounds like what you're wanting more information on is seasonal eating and food preservation.
In addition to farmers' markets, some grocery stores
carry local seasonal produce, so don't dismiss your
local grocery store during the harvest months.
Also, some areas offer farming co-ops that you can be a part of. These co-ops provide seasonal produce all year long, even in the winter months. More information about co-ops can be found at http://foodcircles.missouri.edu/csa.htm.
In addition, there are some MU Extension publications
on the web at
that you can browse for more information about
Sustainable Agriculture Networks.
There is a variety of materials available online at http://extension.missouri.edu about how to preserve foods by freezing, canning, drying, etc. Links to some of these guidesheets are listed below, but be sure browse the website. At the homepage you can type in "food preservation" or when viewing the below pages, click on the different topics in the right-hand sidebar.
- Quality for Keeps: Before You Start to Can--Learn the Basics
- Quality for Keeps: Steps to Success in Home Canning
- Quality for Keeps: Canning Meat, Fish and Poultry
- Quality for Keeps: Food Preservation--Fruitful Canning
- Quality for Keeps: Preserve Your Garden Delights--How to Can Fresh Vegetables
Answered by Jessica Kovarik, RD, LD, Extension Associate, College of Human Environmental Sciences, University of Missouri Extension
Last update: Friday, February 06, 2009