The Yellow Farmhouse Garden

December 18, 2015

Getting your daily USDA fruit and vegetable requirements

Filed under: Economics — bob @ 3:02 pm

I think I’m  pretty good at getting my USDA daily fruit and vegetable recommendations, especially during the growing season. I must admit though, I’m not so good about it during the winter.

I have a good amount of my harvest from the garden frozen, canned and dehydrated so it should be easy enough for me to do. My problem is that I think I won’t have enough to get me through the winter so I try to parcel it out evenly week by week. By summer I usually end up with things left over when I could have been using them to get my daily requirements. After all, there’s always the grocery store if I get low.

I have canned tomatoes, frozen tomatoes and dehydrated tomatoes from this years harvest.

We have canned tomatoes, frozen tomatoes and dehydrated tomatoes from this years harvest.

Most people eat just a fraction of fruits and vegetables of what is recommended.  If it weren’t for french fries and ketchup, some people won’t eat any vegetables at all. I know of some people who wear that as a badge of honor.

But what would happen if everyone decided to start eating their fruits and vegetables like they’re supposed to? A recent USDA survey found that there would not be enough fruit and vegetables to go around. Our population as a whole would increase its consumption of fruit and vegetables buy 132 percent while farmers would need to increase acreage by 137 percent — from 6.5 million acres to 15.3 million acres.

That leaves a lot of potential demand for those who want to get into farming. A person could start out on a small scale selling their produce at local farmer’s markets and roadside stands.

Gardening could also make up part of this demand. A separate study done in Flint in 2009 showed that people in urban areas who participate in in a community garden are 3.5 times more likely to eat fruit and vegetables five times a day. That makes perfect sense to me, who wants to do all that work and not eat the fruit of their labors? That doesn’t even take into account the extra produce that was given away to family and friends.

How did you do this year, are you still getting part of your daily requirements from your 2015 garden harvest? Let us know in the comment section below.


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