Identifying Homegrown Produce

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Certified SCJust like the rest of the green nation, I’m trying to figure out how to buy local produce. But it’s so hard to tell what comes from where. Finally, help’s on the way.

As covered by the Post & Courier, the state has just launched the Certified South Carolina Grown program to help consumers identify locally grown produce. Folks, this is big…really big. I know to some it is just a marketing ploy by the agricultural lobby, but to green shoppers this will make things a whole lot easier.

It’s a pretty robust and ambitious program. Here are some of the details from the P&C:

The state Department of Agriculture unveiled a new marketing campaign Tuesday to promote the sale of locally grown fruits and vegetables. It also launched a new Web site,, which features recipes, stores and roadside stands that sell South Carolina produce and a calendar that shows when products are in season here. By June, the following fruits and vegetables will be marked with “Certified SC Grown” stickers: Apples, butter beans, cabbage, cantaloupes, cucumbers, green onions, mixed greens, peaches, peanuts, peppers, tomatoes, squash, sweet corn, sweet potatoes and watermelons. Within three years, the Agriculture Department will expand the campaign to include all of the state’s agricultural and manufactured products, including shrimp, soybeans, mayonnaise and forestry products.

This sounds promising, and I can’t wait to start seeing these stickers in the wild. I have to give them kudos for putting a calendar of seasonal produce on the site – buying in season is symbiotic with buying local, so this information is important.

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