March 2021: The Produce Moms Podcast Month in Review
March 2021: The Produce Moms Podcast Month in Review
Let’s take a look back at our March 2021 Podcast Episodes.
There was a lot to celebrate this month with our guests on The Produce Moms! From gaining access to local farmers and artisans unlike before, to learning how to lose weight and implement self-care without starving yourself, and celebrating the farmers that take care of our country so well with Farm Worker Awareness week and NatureSweet partnering with Fair Trade USA, this month was filled with love.
We kicked off March with Jaclyn London, author, certified dietician-nutritionist, and Head of Nutrition and Wellness for WW who shared about latest book “Dressing on the Side (and Other Diet Myths Debunked): 11 Science Based Ways to Eat More, Stress Less, and Feel Great About Your Body (Grand Central Life and Style)”, which gives timeless advice to creating a healthy lifestyle without dieting. Ahh… at last! Plus, Jaclyn’s working with WW (formerly Weight Watchers) and their latest My WW Plus program.
Next up, we celebrated NatureSweet (the name behind your favorite Cherubs, Glorys, and D’Vines) and their partnership with Fair Trade USA. Fair Trade USA is a nonprofit organization based in Oakland, California and the leading certifier of fair trade products in the North American market. This is a huge success for the entire produce industry, not only because of the incredible work Fair Trade USA does at empowering farm workers, but because NatureSweet tomatoes are now available at Walmart. What once was a label seen as obscure and even “high-end” is now available to the average American consumer.
Even before COVID-19, you probably found yourself too busy or too far away to visit your local farmers market as often as you wanted to. Then when the pandemic hit, for many of us that wasn’t even an option anymore. Enter in Market Wagon, founded by Nick Carter, who’s also a fourth generation farmer and the author of “More Than A Mile: What America Needs From Local Food”. Market Wagon lets consumers like you shop online from local to you (yes, really!) farmers, vendors and artisans. You can also communicate with them, ask questions and find community in the farmers you’re buying from.
Speaking produce, did you know under 10% of Americans get their recommended daily dose of fruits and vegetables? That may not sound like something to celebrate about, but having this awareness thanks to the research done by the Produce For Better Health Foundation and The NPD Group, we can see where there are opportunities to get more produce in American’s diets. Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak, MS, RDN, President and CEO of the Produce For Better Health Foundation, shares some great tips for parents and consumers alike on how to make eating more produce a habit that you actually enjoy.
We also celebrated Farm Workers Awareness week with three leaders of the Equitable Food Initiative, a program that connects growers, farm workers, retailers and consumers to help farm workers shine. The program has helped multiple cultures come together and bond, and kept the lines of communication between workers in the field and upper management open. Thanks to EFI, workers feel seen and heard and can find resolution to problems quickly. It’s heartwarming and incredible the impact EFI is making in farm workers’ lives.
Did you know that over half of the food produced in America goes to waste? That surely doesn’t sound like something to celebrate about, until you hear what founder Ashley Weingart is doing with Perfectly Imperfect Produce. The subscription box delivery service sends consumers at home perfectly healthy and nutritious produce that was rejected by buyers based on cosmetic defects. Plus, they have meal kits for soups, salads and smoothies, and tons of recipes to show you how to prepare the fruit or veggie in your box you’ve never tried. What’s not to love about reducing waste, reducing hunger and helping you have more fun cooking healthy meals?!
March 2021 Podcast Episode 143
Finally, a way to eat more, stress less, and feel great about your body
All thanks to Jaclyn London (author, certified dietician-nutritionist, and Head of Nutrition and Wellness for WW) and her latest book “Dressing on the Side (and Other Diet Myths Debunked): 11 Science Based Ways to Eat More, Stress Less, and Feel Great About Your Body (Grand Central Life and Style)”. She’s answering your most burning, head spinning questions about losing weight and living a healthy life while dishing up digestible (no pun intended) timeless advice.
Alongside that, Jaclyn along with WW (formerly Weight Watchers) is on a mission to bring out the core message of what self-care really is and how you can incorporate it into your life… no matter how busy or chaotic your schedule is! The team at WW and their latest My WW Plus program are teaching people around the world how to have a holistic approach to wellness and weight loss. Forget the diet “rules”, trends and fads and say hello to a way of life built upon simple, healthy, everyday habits.
March 2021 Podcast Episode 144
Everyone’s favorite tomatoes are now Fair Trade Certified
NatureSweet has always been dedicated to transforming the lives of their agricultural workers across North America and now that mission is stronger than ever with their Fair Trade USA partnership! Fair Trade USA is a nonprofit organization based in Oakland, California and the leading certifier of fair trade products in the North American market.
What does Fair Trade Certified mean exactly? When you see the fair trade label on a piece of produce or a product, it means the farm or factory that produced it is being regularly inspected against the fair trade standards. These standards cover social, economic and environmental practices at the farm level. Also, for every Fair Trade Certified product sold, the producer earns an additional amount of money that goes into a worker controlled Community Development fund. Only the workers have access to it and they decide how the money is used through democratic voting. Don’t worry… the markup is a mere fraction of a penny and allows workers to fund their own access to medical and dental services, transportation for children to get to school, or making clean running water available.
March 2021 Podcast Episode 145
Take a visit to your local farmers market any time you want
There’s something that’s been missing between “agra” and “culture” ad Nick Carter, fourth generation farmer, author of “More Than A Mile: What America Needs From Local Food”, and co-founder and CEO of Market Wagon is on a mission to bring us back to the connection we’ve all been missing. With Market Wagon, consumers like you can shop their local “farmers market” online. You’re directly connected with farmers and artisans that are local to you. Not only can you purchase produce, meat, dairy, eggs, prepared foods, baked goods and snack foods from vetted artisans and farmers, you can communicate with each vendor just like when you walk around a farmers market and chat with the individuals behind their booths.
If a seller is a part of a giant factory or production, they’re not a fit for Market Wagon and local artisans are truly local to you. Get to know the person behind the goods you want to purchase and get a real feeling of the local connection we crave. The artisans want to build a connection with you too and are eager to answer questions about their production process, whether or not they use chemicals or synthetic fertilizers, or hear about products you’d like them to produce next.
March 2021 Podcast Episode 146
The real, hard facts about America’s fruit and vegetable consumption
We all know we should (and could) be eating more fruits and vegetables, but did you know only one in 10 Americans are meeting the daily recommendation? Thanks to the Produce For Better Health Foundation and The NPD Group, we now know that there’s been a 10% annual decline in fruit and vegetable consumption by Americans every year. Those that are eating enough tend to eat a fruit or vegetable at every meal and snack, and are open to trying new recipes, whereas those who aren’t eating enough produce tend to rely on restaurants or eating opportunities away from home.
The good news is there’s a huge opportunity for improvement! For example, why not make sure to eat fruit with your breakfast cereal each morning and make it a habit? If your kids are picky eaters, why not have fun in the kitchen with your kids when cutting up vegetables and making a game out of it? The easiest way to eat more fruits and vegetables is to tie a pleasurable, memorable emotion or experience to it, which is what Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak, MS, RDN, President and CEO of the Produce For Better Health Foundation is sharing with us.
March 2021 Podcast Episode 147
If there’s anyone to be celebrated this month, it’s the farmers that make up America’s backbone
Thanks to the Equitable Food Initiative, growers, farm workers, retailers and consumers are coming together to transform agriculture and improve the lives of farm workers. We celebrated Farm Workers Awareness week with Tony Pacheco, foreign worker and Health and Safety Manager at Winset Farms’ Delta Branch in British Columbia, Canada and co-chair of EFI, Maria Goreti Mireles Gonzalez, Human Resources Coordinator at Andrew & Williamson, and Alice Linsmeier, Workforce Development Senior Facilitator and Specialist with EFI, each of whom shared the incredible impact EFI has made in their lives.
At Winset Farms where workers speak Spanish, Punjabi and English, the EFI program has helped the lines of communication stay open and empower workers from different cultures to come together for potlucks, sharing their unique background, traditions and foods for one another to enjoy. Maria Goreti Mireles Gonzalez talks to new employees about EFI from the moment they are hired and loves seeing them go through a program they might think is going to be boring, but instead has workers acting, singing, brainstorming and speaking up when normally they stay quiet. Alice Linsmeier continues to improve EFI’s programs to make sure workers are treated fairly, have opportunities to excel and a space for their gifts to shine.
March 2021 Podcast Episode 148
Decrease America’s waste and create perfectly imperfect, delicious meals
When Ashley Weingart was working for her family’s wholesaling business, she was shocked at the amount of waste that was happening at the farms she visited. Unfortunately, farms are left with tons of healthy, nutritious produce to either be thrown out or left in the field and plowed under because buyers reject “imperfect” produce. That head of cauliflower that’s slightly yellow or eggplant that’s got a funky shape or blemish could go to people in food deserts or students who don’t have access to fruits and vegetables.
Ashley started Perfectly Imperfect Produce, a subscription box delivery service that allows consumers to order customized boxes of produce straight to their doorstep. Boxes come in different sizes, organic or conventional, pre-sliced and pre-cut, or tailored to a soup, salad, or smoothie recipe. All produce is perfectly healthy, it just might have an odd shape, be over or undersized, have blemishes, scars, or different coloration. Be surprised with produce you’ve never used before, or order a box that goes along with a recipe so you can serve up healthy, delicious meals without having to think about it too much!
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To see a list of all our past episodes, visit www.theproducemoms.com/podcast/