A lot of people have called George Monbiot a lot worse, but he calls himself a fructivist, which is not defined in any online dictionaries, but appears to derive from the latin fructificare or fructus, meaning fruit. He calls himself obsessed with fruit and grows his own. He says:
"Almost all the fruit sold here now seems to taste the same: either rock-hard and dry, or wet and bland. A mango may be ambrosia in India; it tastes like soggy toilet paper in the UK. And the variety of native fruits on sale is smaller than it has been for 200 years."
He also notes that it's not appearance that stores are after, "What counts to the retailer is how well the variety travels...To compound the problem, the supermarkets demand that fruit is picked long before it ripens: it doesn't soften until it rots. This makes great commercial sense. It also ensures that no one in his right mind would want to eat it. But, happily for the retailers, we have forgotten what fruit should taste like. The only way to find out is either to travel abroad or - the low-carbon option - to grow your own. I find myself becoming a fruit evangelist, a fructivist, whose mission is to show people what they are missing."
He concludes that it isn't hard to grow your own, and that there is great satisfaction in it.
"It's not just the produce I love. When you start growing fruit, you enter a world of recondite knowledge, accumulated over centuries of amateur experiments. You must choose the right rootstocks and pollinators and learn about bees, birds and caterpillars. But above all you must learn patience. Growing fruit forces you to think ahead, to imagine a sweeter future and then to wait. Perhaps it is this, as much as the forgotten flavours, that I have been missing." ::Guardian
More Monbiot in
George Monbiot on Flying is Dying
George Monbiot on the Pleasures of the Flesh
George Monbiot on the Real News
See All Entries Tagged Monbiot