Sunday, September 30, 2007

Green Apples

This morning the Wanna-Greenies took an early morning trip to Whole Foods (Pip: "Get up, Mommy." Me: "But I need my beauty sleep." Pip: "You're already beautiful, Mommy." Me: "Ooooooh, thank you, Pip!" Pip: "Now get up." Ooooookay.).

As we swung through the produce department, I happened to notice the selection of apples. Every type of apple was from California and New Zealand. California and New Zealand? Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't it apple season, especially in our neck of the woods? Local apples were practically rolling off the tables at our Farmer's Market. Conventional apples, which Whole Foods carries, were hanging heavy from the branches up in Boston. Could it be that the only apples suitable for sale at Whole Foods were from a minimum of 3,000 miles away? I'm all for organic, but what about local?

{Now, I think I've determined that first three posters who need freezer paper. Miss Kitty, Mom Go Green and Fabricio...if you need/want freezer paper, please contact me with your mailing address.}


Jenny said...

I know! I noticed the same thing the other day. Same story at Trader Joe's.

Jody Sanders said...

We see it to with oranges ... most of the ones in our stores come from California.

Mary Beth said...

That is surprising. All the more reason to stick to Farmer's Market, I guess.

Anonymous said...

I use our local farmer"s market from the first week(usually, may) they open 'til they close(usually oct.) for in-season vegies and fruits...can't beat the fresh taste!...better yet! plant a apple tree or peach tree in your own backyard!! and spread the idea to your neighbors:)

Anonymous said...

I have plenty of freezer paper, but thanks for offering.

Come on people, Whole Foods contracts with mass producing farms. Big business (read: grocery stores) is all about the cost of doing business, not supporting local agri-businesses.

If we want "fresh" grapes in the middle winter, someone in Chile (or where ever that product is currently in season) has to pick it and ship to the US for distribution. If you want totally local produce, you could try co-oping but you eat what is available. My friend got her co-op June box of produce -- yummy mustard greens (will your kid eat it?), 2 kinds of garlic (yahoo), strawberries (eaten on the walk home), and one other thing that I wouldn't want to make for dinner.

Whew, sorry for the rant. I feel better now.

Gift of Green said...

Miss Kitty -
I agree with you, unfortunately, on the CSA boxes. Our area suffered from a severe drought this summer leading to less than stellar shipments that were no fault of the farmer. Luckily, the farmer's market closest to me is open year-round. I guess I do have a love hate relationship with Whole Foods - I enjoy shopping there, but more and more I consider it a place for "gourmet" goods. I remember living in Seattle and going to a real co-op where you paid to participate or worked the register...

mom go green said...

the thing about whole foods is that they loudly proclaim selling "local". they have taken lots of heat for this in the past (try googling Michael Pollan, of Omnivore Dilemma fame, and John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods).

You need to write to them and speak to them, locally and at headquarters. Our Whole Foods has started to make a better effort and really showcasing local produce, even identifying the farms it came from.

But is is a big business and buying from Earthbound farms isn't the same as the farmer at the market, is it?

I say speak up! Call them on it. Apple season on the east coast is a beautiful thing.

Sinclair said...

I have just found this post, but I have to tell you, I am currently in California, and I cannot get a California apple here at all in Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, or any other commercial market. I can have New Zealand and Washington, and other produce from Ecuador, Chile, and Mexico. I have to REALLY read closely to make certain I am even purchasing USA produce, much less from my own state. We buy at farmer's markets as often as we are able.

My blog at is dedicated to green/clean living as well. I hope we all can work together to bring back local market share (wherever our local happens to be).