The Imperfect Digest

Educating and connecting our community.

Going Green on Saint Patrick's Day: The Story of Ugly Cabbage

Going Green on Saint Patrick's Day: The Story of Ugly Cabbage

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In honor of Saint Patrick’s Day, we wanted to tell a little story about some cabbage that we’re buying this March. How can cabbage be ugly, you ask?

When you’re farming organically, pests are always a worry. Recently, our friends at Lakeside Organic Gardens called us about a batch of cabbage that they had in their fields that had some aphid damage on the outer leaves. Normally, cabbages like this would just get left into the field and be tilled back into the soil, returning nutrients to the earth but amounting to lost profits and a tremendous waste of labor, land, and water for Lakeside. Thanks to our relationship with them, they harvested the cabbage just for us and simply peeled back the damaged leaves, leaving these beautiful, small heads of organic cabbage for you to enjoy.

We share this story not because it’s unique, but because stories like this happen on farms across our country every day. Whether you’re growing citrus, rutabagas, or Brussels sprouts, you face an unfair food system that often doesn’t value a large percentage of the nutritious food that you’re growing. We’re working hard to change this. Thanks to your support, we are now at a scale where growers like Lakeside can pick entire fields of “ugly” produce like this specifically for our customers, guaranteeing them a better, more sustainable harvest each year.

The remarkable thing is how obvious all of this sounds. If you had a head of cabbage at home with one damaged leaf, you wouldn’t compost the whole head, right? The beauty of what we’re doing together is that we’re showing the world that even our large and complex food system can operate in a more common sense way for everyone involved. Thank you and a very happy Saint Patricks Day from all of us at Imperfect, our farmers, and our beloved cabbages!

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