Gilt Taste: The Indignity of Industrial Tomatoes. I am eagerly, so eagerly, awaiting tomato season. I don’t have any tomatoes planted in my garden this year (there is structural trouble with the little shelter that kept them from getting moldy in our summer fog), and so the farmer’s market shall be my salvation.
The greengrocer near me carries “tomatoes” year round, and year round they taste unripe and oddly non-tomato like. This is because of the time they have spent on a truck after they were plucked, green, from a distant plant, only becoming red after being exposed to gas at a distribution center. Even though the greengrocer is local, his suppliers are not: nearly half the year, the fruit is from Chile, or places more remote; some items are from Mexico, which is at least adjacent to us. We grow nearly everything he sells in California, but people expect to have something shaped like peaches year-round… bland, mealy peaches, but “peaches” none the less.
I bought some hydroponic tomatoes from him last week, in a fit of desperation. They are better than the others in his display case, but they are only about 68% tomato-y.
Real tomato season, hurry up!
[P.S. Oh yes, and then there’s the slavery. Actual slavery: people locked in and not paid kind of slavery. Read the article to see what I mean.]