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Where does your food come from?

In light of the recent frozen berry health scare, a number of our customers have been asked us a very important question – where does our food come from? The recent media attention around this issue has brought attention to ethics concerned with the price of our health — Go with the cheaper option and buy the imported product? Or support our local farmers and spend a few more dollars? While it’s true that buying frozen produce, especially berries, is a much more economical option, a Hepatitis A outbreak has many of us worried about something we once took for granted: food safety and production practices. The governing body responsible for overseeing food safety regulations in Australia is Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ). FSANZ has strict standards when it comes to food manufacture in Australia, but when produce is grown in foreign countries it can be difficult to control. However, the contaminated berries were grown in China and Chile, and as such do not necessarily adhere to our quality control standards. Buying Australian grown produce ensures two things: that you are purchasing from a sustainable source, and there is more transparency in the production methods. The matter also becomes a little more confusing with Australia’s country-of-origin labelling laws. Australian Consumer Law requires all packaged and most unpackaged food products to provide information about the origin of the food. If you want produce that was grown or sourced in Australia, your best bet is to keep an eye out for ‘Grown in Australia’ or ‘Product of Australia.’ Here at Dineamic, we’re proud to source all of our fresh fruit and vegetables from local Australian and trusted suppliers. We use free range, grass-fed-beef and lambs from a selection of farms across Victoria and free-range chicken from the Hunter Valley. None of our cattle have hormone-growth promotants because they have been shown to affect the tenderness of the meat and make it tough. Our animals are well fed, well bred, stress-free and antibiotic-free.There are a few minor exceptions to this, with our tinned Roma tomatoes being grown in Italy and our spice blends originating from the Middle East, but this is purely to ensure the most authentic end product for our customers. Overall, when you buy a Dineamic product, you can feel confident everything within it, is a premium quality ingredient. Having close links with our produce suppliers means that we have direct sources we can contact quickly and easily, and ensures we have full transparency in food production practices. Using local suppliers also means that we are supporting Australian business as well as reducing food miles. When you’re tucking into your Chicken and Vegetable Risotto for dinner this evening, you can be sure that your free-range chicken has been sourced from the Yarra Valley, and the delicious veggies were grown in South Australia! So don’t let this recent incident put you off purchasing your fruit and veg all together. Just remember, buy locally as much as possible, you can do this through visiting farmer’s markets or fruit and vegetable grocers, and enjoying seasonal produce too, and never be afraid to ask the question “where does my food come from”. For more information or any specific queries you have, please contact us at team@dineamic.com.au