August & the 100-Mile Diet

If you were to become a sustainabilist for one month of the year I would pick August to be your month! But before we dive in I should probably define this made up word. Well, sustainability is a system (like the food system) that maintains its own viability, in other words it can maintain itself. So, if you were to become a sustainabilist then you would be trying to live sustainably for instance by eating locally. Whew!

As the birthplace of the 100-Mile Diet, West Coast consumers know how fortunate we are to have access to local produce year round but what we tend to forget is how lucky we are in August. August is the month where local produce is at its peak! Without even trying consumers can basically crave anything they want (minus asparagus, brussel sprouts and pumpkins) and it will be in the store waiting for them from a local farmer. So take the challenge – for one month buy all your produce locally.

If you’ve accepted my challenge then by September you’ll probably have more berries, stone fruit and leafy greens than you know what to do with. Here’s some storing tips:

  • Berries -  Wash then freeze in single layer on a tray to prevent them from sticking. After an hour combine in one container.
  • Stone fruit (apricots, peaches & nectarines) – Make purees and freeze for smoothies or cook into jams.
  • Leafy greens – Wash, dry and remove stems then freeze to be sautéed or added to soups later.

The bottom line - becoming a sustainabilist is easy in August but eating locally into the fall and winter can be a challenge and will take time. In the long run set yourself up for success and set small attainable goals such as regularly visiting farmers markets or growing your own food. Everything you do can make a difference!