searching for locally grown garlic
It seems that lately I can find only imported garlic (both the fresh bulbs and the crushed garlic in glass jars), and I don't mean at the local supermarkets such as Metro or Provigo, but also at the Jean Talon Market where I was hoping to find locally grown garlic but saw only garlic from China or Argentina. I am very concerned about the safety of food imported from China as I've heard so many horror stories in the news lately about their lack of quality control. Does anyone know where I might find locally grown (or at least grown in Canada) garlic year round and, also, does such a thing as organic garlic exist? thanks a bunch!
It's a little early in the season for locally grown garlic. Green garlic should show up in a few weeks, ripe garlic in July or August. And, yes, organic garlic exists; I get mine from the open air stall across from Les volailles et gibiers du marché. Several stores carry California garlic and Chez Nino and Chez Louis often have beautiful purple, pink or white garlic from Provence (pricey, though, at $3-5 a big head).
I buy my garlic from Ecollegey ( http://www.ecollegey.com/) in NDG. I asked where they get it from and -since it was still winter when i asked - they said they got it from California. I assume that they buy it local when in season but I'm not 100% sure. It's organic and they sell for a buck a head.
Local production goes out around 5-12 Aug. Patrick Lauzon at JTM will possible have 'spring crops' sooner. Otherwise at JTM, go see Patrick Rémillard from Ferme Jacques et Diane stand 192. Rémillard now offers several cultivars. 4 years ago he also started other cultivars that I brought him from trips to Perth and Carp Garlic festivals. Most of his production is Musik variety but he will also have some Rocambole, German red, Korean Red and Cal White. He told me yesterday that crops are looking good. Stored in good conditions (cold, dark and a lot of air) you can keep them until Christmas and exceptionnaly until St-Valentine. Chop them, store in oil and keep in the freeze for longer.
These days you can find the French ail rose Chez Nino and Chez Louis. 3-4$
The Rémillard are not certified but talking with them you can get a good idea that they are not using Round up on their crops. Sometimes certified is just too expensive for small farmers.