In recent years, an international movement to embrace “ugly” produce has started to take root. The idea is simple – by using the edible, but slightly less beautiful fruits and vegetables that are often discarded or never even harvested, we can decrease food waste and feed more people.
Irregular produce is wasted at all levels of the food system. Pickers are often trained not to pick fruit that isn’t up to quality standards in terms of shape, size, color, and time to ripeness. If it is picked, it might get “culled,” or pulled out for not meeting those same standards. Some of this rejected food is sent for processing or to feed animals—if it doesn’t spoil first—but a strangely shaped vegetable, like a bent cucumber, might not meet the processors’ standards either. Finally, we consumers tend to choose the best-looking produce at grocery stores and leave behind the not-so-perfect ones. All of this picking and choosing is a major factor in creating a huge amount of food waste.
I say love the ugly, love the way nature delivers it’s produce to you. It is a system that has taken millions of years of research and development to give you produce that tastes great and is good for you.
Buy for provenance and flavour not for looks.
Support local growers who transcend the mass market, look good, pizazz mentality.
Love the ugly.
Because love is the answer.
See you at the market. Keep it fresh, keep it local.