by Mario Fiorucci of The Healthy Butcher

Late Summer is such a special time for all of us at The Healthy Butcher.  Our farmers have had their animals on fresh pasture where they’ve enjoyed months of the sun’s warmth and the juicy green grasses with a nice meadow breeze on their furry faces.  Despite this year being drier than many, our farmers have continued to keep their commitment to a good quality of life for these animals.  That care and dedication to the animals is most evident in the flavour!

Additionally, our local produce farmers have been growing some of the best produce we’ve tasted.  Every time a delivery truck arrives, it has an Ontario license plate and the goodies abound.  You simply cannot compare the corn imported from the USA in January to this seasonal Certified Organic Ontario treat!  All of our produce is Certified Organic so there’s no confusion with regards to its pedigree.  We buy local when it is available to us.  In our Eglinton store, we have a full produce section and any locally produced item is marked with a GREEN price label.  This time of year, almost all of the labels are GREEN, which is how we like it!

Our local farmers have had some difficulty this year because of the climate.  You’ll notice that some pricing reflects the low supply levels for things like Apples, for instance.  Nonetheless, they have continued to impress us with their delicious and gorgeous produce.  Remember that Real Farming  has real value!

We have also seen changes in our fish case.  The variety and quality of our sustainably raised fish is the best in the city!  All of the fish we sell are sustainably raised, some is Certified Organic and the rest is Oceanwise Recommended.  As a partner in the Oceanwise program, we work to support a future for our fisheries.

So what makes August and September particularly special?  Well, the variety of choices that are on offer means that you’ll have a multitude of options when it comes to your meals.  It also means that our chefs have had the very best of the locally harvested products to produce our “prepared foods”.  (All of it made in-house)

Late Summer is filled with the anticipation of the return of familiar faces and familiar routines, as children go back to school and summer vacations end.  The return to routine is bitter sweet.  It signals a more settled time for everyone.  We love this time of year because just as everyone is returning to making home cooked meals, they have a superb selection of ingredients from which to choose.

We continue to be so very proud of the farmers who supply our stores.  Their dedication to good farming practices ensures that future generations will enjoy the bounty of a sustainably grown harvest.