n. The ability to purchase at the wholesale level certain fruits and vegetables from different parts of the world at different times of the year, thus enabling retailers to offer this produce either year round or for longer periods than their traditional local growing seasons.
Instead, by sourcing food from around the world, they create "a year-long display of cosy familiarity". The buzz phrase is permanent global summer time — PGST — and Hugh believes it is both environmentally unfriendly and inimical to good eating.
—James Delingpole, “As good as it gets,” The Daily Telegraph (London), September 06, 2003
All-year-round strawberries are a sign of our times. The supermarkets' efforts to get supplies of certain foods whatever the season, meaning ordinary vegetables sometimes come from very extraordinary places, has its own name. PGST (permanent global summertime) is where the sun always shines, wrote Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall in G2. But nothing tastes like fruit eaten on the day it was picked.
—“10 things we didn't know this time last week,” BBC News, May 16, 2003
2002 (earliest)
These days, the reality is that most of us buy our fruit and veg in supermarkets, where all the irritating idiosyncrasies of fresh produce have been ironed out to create Permanent Global Summer Time (PGST), a curiously uniform, nature-defying new order. The UK strawberry season now miraculously extends from April right through to November.
—Joanna Blythman, “Strange fruit,” The Guardian, September 07, 2002