Friday, August 24, 2012

Produce notes from Allen....140 Local Items!

New Items This Week
Honeycrisp Apples
Macintosh Apples
Golden Supreme Apples
Florida Avocados
Ground Cherries returned
Carambola (Star Fruit)
Kadota Figs
Asian Pears
Fortune, Ozark, and Red Heart Plums replace the Plums formerly known as red, redder, and reddest
Royal Burgundy Beans
West Indian Gherkins (see Kris's note below)
Organic Orange Peppers came mixed in with the yellow this week, a pretty, pleasant surprise
Bunched Spinach
Sugar Cane
Hurakan Squash-similar to Cousa, or identical if you ask me. I can't tell the difference
Turban Squash - great for eating, great for looking at
Last week I reported the end of the Organic Lemon season, but they are still trickling in.  None of our large produce wholesalers have any "fancy" lemons, but they have some "choice" ones.  We never choose "choice"; it is never good enough.  We have been buying our California citrus directly from a packer for many years, and they have favored us with more of their scant supply than we had hoped for.

I also reported the end of the Vidalia Onion season last week.  I was wrong about that.  They are back at a slightly higher price, but I am happy to report that this season will continue indefinitely.

Our first arrival of new crop Organic Gala Apples will likely happen this Monday.  They will be very limited next week, but not because the Apples are actually scarce.  If you remember, a couple of weeks ago I reported the absence of Jicama and Poblanos due to a hijacked truck.  Today we learned that a truck containing many items we were considering was consumed by flames.  The driver is fine, but the Galas, Bartletts, Plantains, Red Bananas, and "brown and hairy" Coconuts, (yeah, that's what we call them), are goners.

The Gulliver effect. This morning @foodcoop #notwatermelons! on TwitpicMini watermelons?  Same family, different fruit.  The tasty, tart, and crisp little cucumbers you see above (in member Gilly Youner's photo) are called West Indian Gherkins.  Try this little unique addition to your late summer salads while you have the chance.

We have a fantastic deal this week!  Hepworth Farms is offering #2 Heirloom Tomatoes in a 5 pound box for only $6.32 per box.  They have a minor defect that is commonly found in any cross sample of Heirlooms.  The crown (stem end) contains dry cracks in most of these fruits.  I use the term fruits, not only because Tomatoes are fruits (so are Cucumbers, Eggplants, Peppers, etc.), but also that I may repeat something about Tomatoes that I'd recently heard.
What is the difference between knowledge, wisdom, and genius?
Knowledge is knowing that Tomatoes are a fruit.  Wisdom is not putting them in a fruit salad.  
Genius is knowing how to put them in a fruit salad.

This morning, Amy Hepworth called me out of concern for her driver, who had arrived at about 6AM with 919 cases, but without a pallet jack.  She asked us to provide all of the assistance that we could for him.  I told her that we have a powered pallet jack, skilled receiving coordinators and mighty receivers, not to worry.  We found, however, that our pallet jack was not serviceable this morning. The driver of the truck bearing produce and other goods from Lancaster Family Farm Fresh Cooperative provided his willing time, labor and functioning pallet jack, along with his cooperative spirit, to help unload the Hepworth truck.  We are energized and uplifted whenever we experience how contagious cooperation can be.

Allen Zimmerman - Produce Buyer - General Coordinator

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