Organic foods

It’s a while since I wrote a research/information post.  Actually, I started this one a while ago but couldn’t find a way to finish it.

I was reading my Health and Fitness magazine, and came across an article about Health Hazards in a healthy lifestyle.  First was the levels of pesticides on fruit and veg.

Health and Fitness, Pesticides, fruit and veg

“I eat a lot of fruit and veg”

I panicked thought.

Then meat was in the firing line

Health and Fitness, organic meat, antibiotics

“We eat meat”

I panicked thought.  Ok, not as much as fruit and vegetables, but I don’t want part in any threat to the country.  Especially one as big as terrorism.

So I did what any self respecing foodie would do, and went and bought organic spinach and organic fillet steak.

Ok, the fillet steak was at Ben’s request – he had seen it looking all delicious and wanted to see what the big deal was all about.  I wasn’t about to feed him antibiotic ridden steak, so organic it was.

organic fillet steakCrikey!  It’s a bit expensive!  This sort of behaviour is going to bankrupt me!

I regularly buy food from the local Farmer’s market – why do I do it?  A combination of reasons I guess:

  • Supporting local farmers
  • Wider choice of fruit and veg than at a supermarket
  • Reduced food miles
  • 2 out of the 3 vegetable stalls I visit are organic, but I still go to the one which isn’t
  • availability of wild game (think venison) so I figure it must be leaner and have ‘fewer chemicals’

But I couldn’t afford to buy all my food there.

So I was pleased to read Healthy magazine which highlighted that the Food Standards Agency considers the “current levels of pesticide residues in the UK food supply do not present a significant concern for human health”  and maybe that is all you can hope for??  Food which is not going to harm us?

With the food supply chain being so complex, we don’t always know what we are getting.  The horsemeat scandal earlier in the year is an example of how things can go VERY, VERY wrong.  We don’t eat ready meals, or shop bought burgers, so we were feeling quite smug about the whole thing – but it begs the question – what else don’t we know?

We can’t all afford to eat organic all of the time – and I think that on the whole it is better to eat a wide range of fruit and veg, and unprocessed foods, whether they are organic or not than it is to cut them out because of the risk of pesticides.

If they reside on the food, you shouldn’t have to worry about food you peel.

So what am I going to do?

1) From the point of view of what goes into my food? Well, for a long time I have been an advocate of buying real food, and cooking from scratch.  What is REAL FOOD?  See this post from Kath Eats Real Food.  I like her summing up:

“Food that is minimally processed and maintains its natural integrity”

I’m not perfect, but I guess it’s what this food blog is all about:

IT COMES NATURALLY

2) When it comes to organic food, I’ll stick by the guidelines in Healthy Magazine:

“choose organic produce when possible and wash non-organic fruit and veg as well”

It’s not always possible, but I will continue to use the Farmer’s market for a few items a week, and I will try to stick to organic spinach, strawberries and grapes.

This is just my opinion, and as anyone will tell you, it is a woman’s prerogative to change her mind.  So while this is what I believe now, it might change as new research comes out, or as my circumstances change.

What is your opinion?  Do you buy organic?  Do you buy ‘real food’?  Are you more concerned about food miles?

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