These days we are constantly bombarded with messages warning us about eating the wrong foods and as a result there is now a growing awareness of the importance of eating nutritious food and knowing where your food has come from. We are now savvier than ever and look to our supermarkets to offer us a good selection of nutritious choices as well as transparency on the provenance of the food they sell and how it is produced.
Living in Cayman we are very lucky to have seen a wonderful growth in fresh and locally grown fruits and vegetables which can now be found in supermarkets, at the Farmers Markets and on restaurant menus. However, dairy, meat and other food items have to be imported, so we have outlined some simple things to look for when shopping for healthy grocery items.
The popularity of locally produced goods in Cayman is growing day by day. Not only does locally grown produce not have to travel thousands of miles to reach our plates, but it is harvested at the peak of its freshness and flavour and a lot of consideration is given to the growing and cultivation process.
Cayman Farmer’s Markets:
Mon – Sat | 7am-6pm | Cricket Oval, George Town
Every Weds | 10am – 5pm | Camana Bay
Be sure to get there early for the pick of the best produce and fruit selection!
To meet this growing demand farmers have started to invest in large scale greenhouses and farmland to ensure that fresh and nutritious foods are available year-round. This is great news for residents as items such as beets, carrots, peppers, cucumbers, greens and tomatoes will soon be readily available year round.
The majority of farmers in Cayman – and certainly the main suppliers you see at the Farmers Market and in grocery stores – use natural, organic and non-GMO options for their crops. Farmer Clarence McLaughlin of Green Valley Plantation has recently partnered with CayFresh to invest in a 20,000 square foot greenhouse to produce vegetables and herbs year round. He uses natural and organic treatments and drought and heat resistant soils of which all have been tested with the Department of Agriculture for viability and quality.
“If you give kids a little bit of ownership over their food, they’ll really embrace it, so make sure to get them involved in cooking!” -Jaime Oliver
Other farmers do use commercial grade items such as Safer® brand products which contain components made from diatomaceous earth and/or high-quality fish and molasses giving an immediate boost of nutrients that are readily absorbed by emerging roots. This brand is OMRI Listed® and approved for use by organic growers and seems to be used by several farmers in the Cayman Islands.
Maureen is the Wellness Director at Best Life and has over 15 years of experience working with local, international and Fortune 500 companies to help align their brands with health and wellness in the Caribbean.
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