Tuesday, April 13, 2010

produce priority?

i've been thinking about this a lot lately.  you know, one of those seemingly important things when i wake up at 3am and can't go back to sleep.  first, for the past couple of months i've gone to great lengths to convert our home into an organic one.  as in, i've bought probably 90% organic foods and earth friendly products (laundry detergents, house cleaners, dish soaps, etc.) and now that the spring and summer months are here - i can almost smell the farmers market. (eh, maybe i just smell the fresh dirt in dad's garden and the california strawberries in the grocery store - which, by the way, are the kind you can smell before you see and let me assure you they taste just as good as they smell!)

BUT, i've created a crisis in my own mind.  what is more important:  supporting local farmers or buying organic?  my dad is NOT an organic farmer.  he uses pesticides (and herbicides?) and non-"home grown" fertilizer.  he also shoots the animals that try to take his crops rather than building animal friendly deterrents.  (well, in all honesty his garden is too big for a fence and other deterrents haven't helped..., he has tried!  yeah, i'm not sure what the scarecrow is for except maybe crows.  i do not have issues with shooting animals.)  he get so many vegetables out of his garden and they are all free.  home grown and free.  nothing better, right? 

except organic - maybe.  i just know how many chemical he puts out on, lets just use green beans for an example.  if he doesn't, they get eaten to pieces with bugs.  and then they are basically useless for eating.  he has to use the pesticides.  and washing them - well i can wash the beans, but aren't those chemicals, at that point, a PART of the bean? 

well i'm open for advice here, except for the obvious point of "they are free" because i know that.  i'm just a little new at this organic vs. locally grown thing.  just ignore the fact the local is family.

(P.S. i'm not trying to "look a gift horse in the mouth" so to speak.  my gut tells me that "local" is more important than "organic" - even if i was shopping at the farmers market for something he didn't grow, i still think that i would prefer local-grown-in-nc-and-not-organic to organic-and-grown-in-oregon.  even if they were the same price.)

1 comment:

  1. For more than enough info on this, read "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" by Barbara Kingsolver.

    My two cents is buying local is more important. Not only do you support your local economy/farmers, but, there isn't the issue of all the gas/energy it takes to get non-local produce here. And, chances are, the local farmers, even if they are using some chemicals, it's nothing like the mass producers.

    The free part is a definite plus, too!

    We just signed up for a weekly produce box for $22. It starts next week. Can't wait!



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