Fresh Veggies Day on June 16 is celebrated to commemorate the nutritional value of fresh vegetables and their importance to human health. Fresh vegetables are the best sources of micronutrients that are vital for metabolism, growth, development, and disease prevention. The natural fiber content in vegetables helps prevent constipation, hemorrhoids, and colon cancer. According to “Food & Wine” magazine, there is no such thing as a bad vegetable. Some may need extra work to remove an outer shell or be peeled, and some fare better when cooked. However, there is no reason not to eat fresh vegetables every day.
History of Fresh Veggies Day
The first settlers of America’s heartland were mostly farmers from Great Britain and Scandinavia who brought farming techniques from their homelands to till the rich soil of the Midwest. Most American settlers lived near the Atlantic coast and shipped their produce east for consumption. But with the advent of railroads in the mid-1800s, farmers could ship food directly to Chicago, where it was processed into canned goods and transported back east by rail or boat.
By 1852, the nationwide distribution of fruits and vegetables had become a big deal. “The New York Times” referred to the California and Oregon trail as the great thoroughfare for transporting fresh fruit. In 1855, 59 million pounds of produce were sent from the West Coast by rail.
In 1862, the Department of Agriculture was created to ensure that everyone had access to fresh veggies and improved nutrition in the U.S. So far, they have been successful. New organic and vegan products have hit the market in recent years, making vegetable consumption even more accessible for all people.
In the spring of 1992, a group of farmers in rural North Dakota gathered to discuss the future of their farms and their families. They wanted to evolve from what we call conventional farming using agrochemicals and tilling their soil for weed control to a system that would use less chemical pollution and less fossil fuel. The farmers decided to stop using chemical pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and fertilizers on one-quarter of their land. Instead, they used complex crop rotations, cover crops, manure, and compost to provide fertility.
Fresh Veggies Day timeline
Farmers ship food directly to Chicago, where it is processed into canned goods and transported back East by rail or boat.
59 million pounds of produce is sent from the West Coast by rail.
This step is taken to ensure that everyone has access to fresh veggies and improved nutrition in the U.S.
Farmers gather in Rural North Dakota to evolve from what we call conventional farming using agrochemicals and tilling their soil for weed control, to a system that uses less chemical pollution and less fossil fuel.
Fresh Veggies Day FAQs
What is the most popular green vegetable?
Green Giant found that broccoli is the most popular veggie in 39 states.
Which vegetables should you eat every day?
Healthy eating means consuming more dark leafy greens, such as broccoli and spinach. You can also include more red or orange vegetables, such as carrots, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and legumes, in your diet.
Can I eat too many vegetables?
Surprisingly, consuming too many veggies can also cause nutrient deficiencies where, because your stomach is so busy trying to process all those plants, it can’t absorb nutrients from other types of food.
Fresh Veggies Day Activities
Visit a farmer
Learn from the farmer how to produce vegetables until they are ready for the market. After that, help them in the production process.
Have a lunch or dinner party
Arrange a lunch or dinner party where the whole menu is fresh veggies. Capture the moment and then share it on your social media.
Send a package containing vegetables
Make a pack of fresh veggies and send it to your family or friends. It’s a great way to show you care about their health.
5 Facts About Broccoli You Didn't Know
The most significant contributor
Broccoli production in the U.S. originating from California reaches 90%.
The world record for eating broccoli
Tom Landers holds the world record title for eating broccoli; he ate a pound of broccoli in just 92 seconds.
Loved by the American people
The average American eats around four pounds of broccoli every year, according to the U.S Department of Agriculture.
Broccoli has cancer-preventing abilities
Antioxidants present in broccoli reduce oxidative stress, thereby preventing cancer.
The heaviest broccoli reaches 35 pounds
As per the Guinness World Record, the heaviest broccoli weighed to date was 35 pounds — it was grown by John and Mary Evans in 1993.
Why We Love Fresh Veggies Day
People are encouraged to eat more vegetables
The main reason for celebrating Fresh Veggies Day is to encourage people to eat more fresh vegetables. People tend to take for granted that it should be consumed cooked but, many vegetables like carrots and cabbage can safely be eaten raw.
It educates people about vegetables’ importance
Fresh vegetables are an essential part of a healthy diet because they are full of vitamins and minerals, making them helpful in giving us energy. Fresh Veggies Day aims to educate people on the benefits of consuming fresh fruits and vegetables every day.
It creates environmental awareness
Fresh food may be important for your health, but it is also important for maintaining our environment. Consuming a plant-based diet helps reduce greenhouse gasses and preserve our natural resources.
Fresh Veggies Day dates