Food Shopping = A Great Day Out with the Kids?

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September 12, 2012 by Bloke In A Kitchen

Question: Can we transform our food shopping from a chore, into a more positive, rewarding experience???

Answer: Probably yes.  Especially whilst contemplating the Buddhist concept of ‘Emptiness‘, and then marvelling at the almost infinite range of squeezy cheeses in the chiller cabinet at ASDA.

I’ve been musing a little about our children’s relationship with food these days, and I soon realised this is in fact a BIG subject for our society at large.  Like every parent, I feel it important to pass down what I hope are all sorts of positive values and experiences in life, and for me, just one of these is an interest and passion for good food.

One recent example of this was a visit to a local Free Range Egg farm.  The mundane ritual of throwing half a dozen eggs into a supermarket trolley (not literally), was transformed into a magical hour or so of laughter & fun.

This got me thinking of some of the other ways we can get children involved and genuinely interested in real food.  If this can become a natural part of day-to-day living, then I’m sure it can go a long way to lessening food anxieties some children have, encouraging healthy eating for life, and as a result, happier children.

I’m as guilty as the next person in still buying much of my food shopping from my local supermarket, and I’ve promised myself to make more use of the excellent veg, fish and cheese stalls at our local market.  However, some food shopping needn’t be shopping in the usual sense at all.  The following are just a few ideas…

  • Farmer’s markets
  • Pick Your Own‘ farms. Find your nearest one here.
  • Cockling by the sea
  • Foraging for wild fruits such as raspberries and blackberries whilst going on walks in the countryside.
  • Local community veg and herb gardens, such as the truly inspiring Incredible Edible Todmorden initiative.
  • Collecting wild mushrooms

In short, I think a much wider, Holistic approach, from each of us is what’s urgently needed.  In this way, I’m sure there’s a world of fun, new experiences and learning to be had too, rather than by simply trying to convince kids of the horrors of junk food, and forcing ‘Healthy Options‘ on them.

And perhaps all this might transform the weekly trip to the supermarket too?


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