For whatever reason, he has been stuck going to the store with me lately. It has been tragically unavoidable for him twice this past month. The first time, he put on a smile and even got a separate cart. I did the serious shopping while he took the girls and ran around the store entertaining them. We were all in the produce section together, but he ran into a friend and was too distracted to notice what I was putting in the cart. The second time, he was paying attention.
Him- Hey, I forgot to tell you I gave Little Girl the last apple yesterday. We need red apples. (heads over to the apples)
Me- Ok, no problem. (heads over to the other apples)
Him- Where are you going?
Me- To get apples.
Him- But the apples are over here.
Me- Yes, but the organic apples are over here. (silence)
|The ultimate marriage showdown in A Christmas Story.|
"The word 'organic' refers to the way farmers grow and process agricultural products...here are some key differences between conventional farming and organic farming:" (source)
|Apply chemical fertilizers to promote plant growth.||Apply natural fertilizers, such as manure or compost, to feed soil and plants.|
|Spray insecticides to reduce pests and disease.||Use beneficial insects and birds, mating disruption or traps to reduce pests and disease.|
|Use herbicides to manage weeds.||Rotate crops, till, hand weed or mulch to manage weeds.|
|Give animals antibiotics, growth hormones and medications to prevent disease and spur growth.||Give animals organic feed and allow them access to the outdoors. Use preventive measures — such as rotational grazing, a balanced diet and clean housing — to help minimize disease.|
"Going organic is good for you and the Earth, but if you can't always afford it -- since organic can cost 50%-100% more -- experts recommend spending most of your organic food dollars on produce and the foods you eat most often. The Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit organization in Washington, D.C., recommends going organic on produce that is most susceptible to pesticide residue, like peaches." (source)
"Topping the 2011 dirty dozen list is a tree fruit that always makes the list: Apples. (Apples ranked No. 2 in 2009 and No. 4 in 2010.) More than 40 different pesticides have been detected on apples, because fungus and insect threats prompt farmers to spray various chemicals on their orchards. Not surprisingly, pesticide residue is also found in apple juice and apple sauce, making all apple products smart foods to buy organic."
The "dirty dozen" refers to the latest list of foods with the highest pesticide residue. The 2011 list (in sequential order) is apples, celery, strawberries, peaches, spinach, nectarines (imported), grapes (imported), sweet bell peppers, potatoes, blueberries, lettuce, and kale and collard greens tie for 12th. We have 9 out of 13 in constant supply at our home. Well, the peaches and nectarines aren't always in season, but I'll pay extra to get blueberries and strawberries when they aren't in season. I do buy celery and grapes but they never get eaten. The list goes on to include fatty meats, milk, coffee, wine, and chocolate.
Much to my dismay, the top story on the news the very next evening was, "High arsenic levels found in organic foods, baby formula." Great. From MSNBC, "Next time you pick up an organic cereal bar or buy infant formula, you might want to read the label closely. High levels of arsenic, a chemical linked to cancer, chronic diseases and developmental effects, have been found in foods that list organic brown rice syrup as a primary ingredient, according to a new study from Dartmouth University." (source)
Aaaaaand, we're back to square one. I would love to know, does your family make an effort to buy organic, or not? What is your reasoning either way?