Another spring, another season of locally grown Jersey Fresh produce.

State Agriculture Secretary Doug Fisher highlighted the start of the asparagus season last week with an appearance at a South Jersey farm. There is also lettuce, radishes and spinach — and, department spokesman Jeff Wolfe said, "everything else is looking really good right now."

"In the south (Jersey) as well, there are some strawberries out now too. So it is just beginning to come into season right now, and that will be more in the middle to later part of the month, when it gets across the whole state," he said. "Those are the things that you should be looking for."

Wolfe said the department has been in touch with farmers and farm market owners in the state, and "they are very excited for the Jersey Fresh season, for what they can produce for the season this year."

"We have been very fortunate, especially in terms of the peaches this year. We 'knock on wood' a little bit right now, and just hope for no late frost or anything like that," he siad. "Right now, those are in excellent shape. Those are some of the most sensitive crops that we have, peaches and apples and those types of things."

He also makes the point that many of us want to know more about what we eat. Wolfe said at a farm market, you can actually get some facetime with the people who produce what you are buying.

"When you buy Jersey Fresh, especially if you are at local farmers markets, you can ask questions to the people who actually grow it, and you can find out about how the food was grown and how it was made and all," he said.

Every Monday afternoon, the Jersey Fresh availability report and forecast goes on line at jerseyfresh.nj.gov. People can check to see what is new and what is becoming available each week.

Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5.

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