There are so many things to love about summer, but one of the best things about Ontario summers is the wide variety of fruits and vegetables that grow and thrive. In this article, we’re going to cover the Ontario fruits that are in season, best time to buy, and recipes to try with these fresh ingredients.
Why shop in season?
Eating in season fruits and vegetables is beneficial for you, your wallet, local farms and the environment.
For starters, fruits and vegetables have many important nutrients such as fibre, vitamins and minerals that are important for your overall health. Canada’s Food Guide recommends including plenty of vegetables and fruits in your meals and snacks (half your plate to be exact!).
In addition, eating in season is often less expensive. When farmers harvest large amounts of fruits and vegetables, the cost for the consumer goes down. As a resident of Ontario, the cost to purchase locally grown food is often less than what it costs to enjoy imported fruits grown in different climates far away.
Lastly, supporting local farms and buying locally grown produce has a positive impact on your community’s businesses and the environment. If you think about the transportation impacts (ie. emissions) required for moving fruits from one country to another, you’re much better off to consume what’s closer to home as much as you can.
What fruits are in season?
I am sure you’re wondering what is in season in Ontario right now.
Lucky for us, there are helpful guides to inform Ontarians on what fruits to buy in season and when they are at their prime. They also have handy advice on when to buy vegetables. Take a look:
To recap, here is what you can find at its best in…
July and August:
August and September:
*Keep in mind, this is a general summary. Produce will vary based on weather conditions and other production-related factors. Always take a look at the locally grown fruits and vegetables sold at your grocery store, markets or nearby farms to determine availability and what produce is at its best.
The Six Seasons
Ready for a fun fact?! When looking at when in season fruits and vegetables thrive, six seasons are considered, instead of the four seasons many of us are used to. Here’s how it works:
- Spring: Late March or early April when the first fresh produce arrives.
- Early Summer: From May to June when fresh produce becomes more abundant.
- Summer: The July and August sunshine makes these the top months for fresh produce in Ontario.
- Early Fall: Warm September days, mixed with cooler nights makes this month optimal for certain fruits.
- Fall: Last chance to enjoy some of the summer produce. Root vegetables start to get sweeter.
- Winter: Storage-friendly produce like apples and potatoes are best suited for the cold months. Think – soup season!
Pro tip – freeze fruits such as berries over the winter! This way you can enjoy them all year round.
Recipes to enjoy
Now that you know what fruits are in season in Ontario, it’s time to have some fun in the kitchen. Below, we’ve included several recipes to try with the fresh produce Ontario has to offer all summer long!
Shop Ontario fruits while they’re in season
When it comes to buying in season Ontario fruits and vegetables, you simply can’t go wrong. There is a wide variety of produce offered, you’re supporting local (which is also more sustainable), nourishing your body with nutrient-rich foods, and saving money!
Keep an eye out for seasonal produce at great prices in your weekly flyers on reebee!
We’d love to hear from you! Drop a comment with your favourite seasonal fruits!