organic? that's just crazy talk!

Since Mason's been gone I have had a lot of friends over for different things at the house. Some how we always end up in the kitchen and inevidibly my pantry door is opened and that is when it begins. "You have alot of organic food. Hey, what does organic mean?" I guess since I have been eating for a few years now and its even at Walmart I forget that other people haven't really been educated on it. I guess people just assume that food that has the potential to be bad for you wouldn't be allowed to be sold in the grocery store... but they are wrong. Here is the definition of organic from wikipedia...

Organic food is produced according to legally regulated standards. For crops, it means they were grown without the use of conventional pesticides, artificial fertilizers or sewage sludge, and that they were processed without ionizing radiation or food additives. For animals, it means they were reared without the routine use of antibiotics and without the use of growth hormones. Also, at all levels, organic food is produced without the use of genetically modified organisms.

Some Benefits:
Organic farms do not release synthetic pesticides or herbicides into the environment—some of which have the potential to harm local wildlife.

Organic farms are better than conventional farms at sustaining diverse ecosystems, i.e., populations of plants and insects, as well as animals.

When calculated either per unit area or per unit of yield, organic farms use less energy and produce less waste, e.g., waste such as packaging materials for chemicals.

side note:
A genetically modified organism (GMO) is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using techniques in genetics generally known as recombinant DNA technology. Recombinant DNA technology is the ability to combine DNA molecules from different sources into one molecule in a test tube. Thus, the expression of certain traits, the phenotype of the organism, or the proteins it produces, can be altered through the modification of its genes.

The two things that scare me the most about conventional food is the pesticides and the GMOs. I think we forget as we walk the isle of our grocery stores that there are poisions in our food.

A study published by the National Research Council in 1993 determined that for infants and children, the major source of exposure to pesticides is through diet.

Most conventionally grown foods contain pesticides and herbicide residues.

The US Environmental Protection Agency and state agencies periodically review the licensing of suspect pesticides, but the process of de-listing is slow. One example of this slow process is exemplified by the pesticide Dichlorvos, or DDVP, which as recently as the year 2006 the EPA proposed its continued sale. The EPA has almost banned this pesticide on several occasions since the 1970s, but it never did so despite considerable evidence that suggests DDVP is not only carcinogenic but dangerous to the human nervous system – especially in children.

That just scares me to death, and that is why I pay 1.99 for a can of corn!


La Rae said...

You see Julia...I don't need to make my own blog. I can just spend my mornings reading yours. So interesting. Keep up the good work.
Of course this doesn't mean I'm going to spend 1.50 more on corn. Maybe..just maybe...one day- when John looks the other way I will start buying organic food. It sounds nice...

annie said...

Sometimes when we consider our bigger food bills from shopping healthy we call it the health tax and just accept that this is the price for knowing what we're eating. Other times, we consider it insurance--like we'd rather pay to prevent illness than to treat it. Either way, we always justify it.

You know, people knew cigarettes were unhealthy years before the gov't limited their ads and curbed where people could smoke. The people who took those first proactive steps (to stop smoking during pregnancies or around children before the whole world admitted that's the safest thing to do) must have looked pretty crazy then, just as we organic corn buyers look now. Good for you for being an informed parent and for putting your family's health before a few extra dollars here and there.