When you do your food shopping, try to think about how you cook. Shop for the different food groups needed for a healthy meal. Most meals have vegetables, a protein (like meat), carbohydrates (grains & starches), and maybe a small piece of fruit. You’ll also want to buy herbs and spices to make your food taste great. Look at the image below to get an idea of how to organize your shopping:

Food & Cooking - Meal Categories

Grocery Stores & Supermarkets

In the United States, most people do their food shopping at supermarkets and in grocery stores. Grocery stores are usually organized into different sections. For example: dairy, meat, produce, bakery, canned goods, frozen foods, etc. Supermarkets are huge grocery stores that offer thousands of different products. They often include all of the food that a grocery store offers plus a pharmacy, office supplies, cleaning supplies, and other things that people want to buy regularly.

The produce (fruit and vegetables) section of the supermarket has food from all over the world. Farmers in Argentina, China, Brazil, Tanzania, and elsewhere ship their crops to grocery stores in the United States. This means that customers can purchase things like apples, corn, avocados, mangos, and strawberries even in the middle of the winter. It is great for people’s healthy, since they can still get many of the essential vitamins they need. However, there is a downside. The further away food is grown, the more energy it takes to transport it. Using more energy almost always creates more pollution.

Farmer’s Markets

Everyone loves to eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, but most people prefer to enjoy food grown locally, or close to where they live. The advantage of local produce is that it supports local farms and is usually fresher than food grown far away because it takes a long time to transport it to the market. In many cities in the United States, there are farmer’s markets where farmers and bakers offer locally-grown food during the spring, summer and fall seasons.

Farmer's Market - Green Granny Smith

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