Have you heard about the pumpkin shortage?

Fall is a special time of year: a time filled with fun activities such as apple picking, and leaf jumping. It is also a time when the pumpkin, an American household staple, gets its time to shine. From craving jack-o-lanterns to baking pumpkin pies, in the US the fall months are typically filled with pumpkin. This year pumpkin crop was hit hard by unseasonable weather. The damage could mean less pumpkin surplus.

 A variety of pumpkins grown in Montesano this season. 

A variety of pumpkins grown in Montesano this season. 

The idea of seasonality can sometimes be quite foreign to our modern lives. We live in a time where a quick trip to the grocery store usually results in the purchase of any produce we desire, regardless of where is grows. Yet, there is something to be said about a juicy tomato in the summer, roasted baby potatoes with peas in the spring, winter squash soup in winter, and of course, pumpkin treats in the fall.

As the examples above call to mind, eating seasonally is the way nature intended for us to enjoy our food. Seasonal eating is more than just convenience and great tasting produce-there are many benefits of the intentional diet. For one, seasonal food is fresher which means it retains more nutrients. This makes the food healthier for our bodies. Secondly, eating with the seasons boosts our local economy (and your wallet!). Buying from a local farmer is simpler when you are in the mindset of buying what is currently being grown. Finally, seasonal eating results in a small environmental impact versus the very large one of buying strawberries shipped into the PNW from Florida in December. When your food only travels mere miles to your plate, your ecological conscience is fed along with your stomach. To learn more about seasonality in Western Washington, visit these links: Seasonality Chart  Vegetable Chart  Fruit Chart