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Old 10-08-2004, 06:02 PM   #1
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Organic Foods

I was curious how many of this list buy organic foods only or partially. I live in an area where they are abundant and I usually buy only seasonal organic produce and meats. Sometimes we cannot always get it, but I do not buy boxed or frozen foods at all except some frozen desert items and sometimes berries and mushroom medely. The food does taste a lot better when done fresh, but that is my opinion. If I buy anything that is packaged I read the label and if it contains chemicals I do not buy it.

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Old 10-08-2004, 06:06 PM   #2
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everything i eat is all organic!!
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Old 10-08-2004, 07:52 PM   #3
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My opinion is "organic = overpriced, same as low-carb = overpriced." Not trying to be argumentative, but that's my opinion.
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Old 10-08-2004, 07:59 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Otter
My opinion is "organic = overpriced, same as low-carb = overpriced." Not trying to be argumentative, but that's my opinion.
only if you know where to get the organic foods for cheap
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Old 10-08-2004, 08:04 PM   #5
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I like the preservatives..... I figure that it will counter my smoking habbit and make me like longer.
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Old 10-08-2004, 09:24 PM   #6
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We try to buy local and organic. We are fortunate to have friends how are part of the Organic Valley Co-operative farms. They run an organic dairy, grow their own organic feed in addition to raising organic meat chickens, laying hens, raising organic pork and pasture raised beef.

The chick runs about 2.69 # for approx 6# birds. The organic beef anywhere from 3-3.69 #. Considering chicken breasts can run around 3.99 # for factory farmed I don't find the organic prices out of line.
Produce can be pricey BUT if you stick to seasonal produce or buy through a co-op you often can purchase organic at the same price or less than "regular" produce.
I see a big difference in the taste of my meat/poultry dishes. You can actually brown meat that has not been injected with sodium solution ( as much of the meat especially in Wal-mart is!) Additionally I don't have to worry that the cow was eating OTHER dead cows!

We were raising our own laying hens(until they decided to live in my neighbor's tree! THATS a story for another day!) we gave them organic feed and allowed them to range free. The taste of store eggs is fishy(literally).
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Old 10-08-2004, 09:43 PM   #7
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Organic foods tend to be of higher quality, simply because they tend to be more expensive, and to justify that expense, they are often, in my experience, simply better. However, that being said, I am skeptical about many organic foods. The GMO issue is one where hysteria and ignorance has won out over real science. Only morons and the ignorant believe in all that "frankenfood" nonsense that is popular in Europe. Also, for certain products, organic foods are pointless. Does anyone honestly believe that organic coffee extract or chocolate is somehow better than regular? Give me a break. I'm sure that Green and Black makes quality chocolate, for example, but I also know that Valhrona, Scharffen Berger, Lindt, Callebaut, and many of the most acclaimed chocolate makers that you see in the top lists and surveys in hundreds of articles and cookbooks are not organic. If the best producers don't bother with organic, then it's not worth my time. More to the point, unless you can give me a concrete reasons to buy a specific organic product (threat of BSE, ethical treatment of animals, etc...) I'm not going to waste my money just because some tree hugger tells me it is "natural". (whatever the heck that means)

The only area where I am much more likely to choose organic products is in the area of meat. These damn meat producers were feeding their cattle rendered meat products for years, spreading BSE and threatening all of our health. They pump all sorts of crap into their livestock, including hormones. Granted, hormones are harmless, but I suspect that they could just as easily have been dangerous, and the producers would have happily kept on pumping them in without regard for our safety. I don't trust these meat producers. I also think they do not treat their animals humanely, which doesn't exactly endear me to them.
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Old 10-08-2004, 09:52 PM   #8
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Personally I am not if favor of genetically modified foods...home that doesn't make me a moron!

BUT I really DO like Scharffen Berger Chocolate...anyway its made! :P
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Old 10-08-2004, 10:03 PM   #9
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Scharffen Berger is excellent. They are cheaper than Valrhona, but substatively equal in quality. For me it's like Coke versus Pepsi; I like Valrhona ever so slightly more in a direct comparison, but not enough to justify the cost. SB kicks ass.
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Old 10-08-2004, 10:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by -DEADLY SUSHI-
I like the preservatives..... I figure that it will counter my smoking habbit and make me like longer.
otter, try organic carrots and bananas vs. regular ones just as a test. you won't believe the difference.

my garden is totally organic, to the point of including sacrificial plants for pests, overplanting to account for loss, releasing beneficial nematodes and hunter insects, and composting. the produce that comes from it is amazing, year after year. chemical pesticides and fertilizers work for a while, but definitely rob the produce of certain key things that control taste and texture, as well as cause you to become dependent on them. once you begin that slippery slope, the soil gets worse and worse and the more chemicals you have to use.

my wife and i buy as much organic produce and meats as we can, but unfortunately, it's not all that available so it probably only makes up about half of our diet.
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Old 10-08-2004, 10:32 PM   #11
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Buckytom-Is there a Wholefoods Market in your area?
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Old 10-09-2004, 01:01 AM   #12
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If they make it organic, I buy it!


Gotta love those elves!
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Old 10-09-2004, 09:35 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taboo
Buckytom-Is there a Wholefoods Market in your area?
hi taboo,
there's a few around, but unfortunately not near where i live. every time dw and i pass one, we stop and load up. so far, the only thing that i've bought there that i've been disappointed with was imported buffala mozzarella. it was mushy, not firm in the center showing it was past it's prime. but everything else we've bought was really good.
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Old 10-09-2004, 09:42 AM   #14
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Whole Foods is so-so. They have a good selection overall, but not as good as you would hope from the prices. For example, I purchased some organic strawberries from them a couple weeks ago for like $5.00 CA (about $6.50 US) per box (the standard small-sized boxes, containing maybe 20 strawberries) and to my disappointment, they were totally mediocre, no better than the strawberries I got at my local trash supermarket (equivalent in quality to price chopper, only with high prices) for $2.00 a box. Their apples are so-so, but also not really as good as I would have hoped, given the price. I don't know about your area, but in a city like Toronto, there are definitely better places to buy fruit than Whole Foods, and ditto for meats and other products. If I buy something organic for twice the price, it had better be significantly better in quality too, otherwise they can forget about it. The only reason I go to Whole Foods now is because they carry a good selection of flour.
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Old 10-09-2004, 10:29 AM   #15
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here's an article from RealSimple that I go by...

TEN ORGANIC FOODS WELL WORTH THE MONEY

Scientists measure it. Mothers debate it. Others dismiss it. But whatever the danger of synthetic pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers, many U.S. consumers have already made up their minds. They buy organic, especially if the foods they eat most often are the ones that tend to be most heavily treated. These include:

apples
A is for apple -- and a lot of pesticides. According to the Food and Drug Administration, more pesticides (a whopping 36) are found on apples than on any other fruit or vegetable. In one test, as many as seven chemicals were found on a single apple. no organic? Peel your apples, and look for apples from New Zealand (it's noted on the little produce stickers), which are treated with half as many pesticides as those grown Stateside.

baby foods
"An infant's immune, nervous, and detoxification system is less developed than an adult's and more vulnerable to the effects of pesticides," says Elson M. Haas, M.D., author of The Staying Healthy Shopper's Guide. The green beans, peaches, and apples that go into baby food (and all over your kitchen floor) tend to be treated with chemicals. Organic brands like Earth's Best are available. no organic? Make your own purees by tossing organic fruits and vegetables into the blender.

butter and milk
The grains that dairy cows eat are heavily treated with chemicals, which have a residual, though still notable, presence in milk and dairy products. (Milk may also contain bovine growth hormone and antibiotics.)

cantaloupe
Cantaloupes often contain five of the longest-lasting chemicals, one of which is dieldrin, an exceedingly toxic and carcinogenic insecticide. Though it was banned in 1974, residues still persist in soils and are taken up through the cantaloupe's roots and absorbed into the edible portion. no organic? Thoroughly wash the outside of the melon, since a knife can drag exterior residues through the flesh as you slice it.

cucumbers
In a survey of 42 common vegetables, cucumbers were ranked second in cancer risk and 12th in "most contaminated food" by the Environmental Working Group, a respected public-interest group. no organic? Peel the cucumbers, since the waxes used to make the skin shiny also tend to hold chemicals.

grapes
Because grapes ripen quickly, tend to mold, and attract insects, growers hit them with multiple applications of various chemicals. The worst are Chilean grapes, which are treated with as many as 17 of them. (Ninety percent of the grapes eaten in the United States from January to April are Chilean.) no organic? Buy grapes grown domestically; they are treated with fewer chemicals.

green beans
The Environmental Protection Agency has more than 60 pesticides registered for use on green beans. no organic? Choose fresh beans over canned or frozen. Wash them well.

spinach
In a certain cartoon, spinach makes muscles. In real life, the chemicals used to treat it may cause cancer or interfere with hormone production. no organic? Vigilantly wash each leaf separately under running water.

strawberries
Strawberries are one of the most contaminated of all produce items in the United States. no organic? Choose local berries over long-distance ones (there's less spraying). The package should say where they're from, or the supermarket's produce manager should know.

winter squash
Like cantaloupes and cucumbers, winter squash has a propensity to absorb dieldrin from the soil into its edible parts. no organic? Buy Mexican. The soil in Mexico is largely uncontaminated by dieldrin.

Good Luck!
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Old 10-09-2004, 04:49 PM   #16
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What a bummer that Whole Foods is not all its cracked up to be. We have only been to one once, on the way back from Cape Cod. We only stocked up on some healthy snacks for the ride. I really did like all the nuts they had available.

Here we buy local as often as possible, including milk.(Organic goats from Nuns!) Baby food we process ourselves as well as freezing my own spinach. I have yet to can or freeze green beans...hopefully next year!

Thanks all for the great info!
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Old 10-09-2004, 05:57 PM   #17
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I am so happy for these informative posts, thanks to all of you. I believe that organic foods are more healthy for you because you cannot wash off the chemicals thoroughly. My personal opinion is that all of these preservatives are causing some of the health problems experienced today. In nearly every boxed and frozen and some canned foods there is an ingredient called partially hydroxinated oil, these are trans fatty acids which are causing high cholestoral in people. THe government said they were OK but now the manufacturers have been given a deadline to remove them and add the cholestoral content, like other oils, to the label. I just got tired of having the government say it is ok and then a few years later say it is not. THere really is a difference in the flavor of organic foods and I think they are worth the extra money. We too have severala CSA farms here for our outdoor farmers markets. I was there today and purchased delicata squash @.79/lb; baby white corn 3/$1, radishes $1.30/bunch and baby carrots $1.75 a bunch.
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Old 10-09-2004, 06:21 PM   #18
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Are you sure you don't mean hydrogenated vegetable oil? This is extremely unhealthy to be sure, but it's hardly limited to processed food; if you ever bake with vegetable shortening, that is the same thing. My feeling is that home baked treats are just as unhealthy as store-bought. The only difference is I know what kind of junk I'm putting into my home-made products, whereas the store-bought stuff is a little harder to gauge because of the obscure language on the ingredient list.

As for the whole pesticide issue, VERY disturbing...
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Old 10-09-2004, 07:18 PM   #19
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I sometimes buy organic, and always buy local - when possible. It's a bit tricky in winter in England, you have to get some imported fruit and veg into your diet, or all you would eat would be potatoes, swedes and carrots....oh and brussel sprouts

I am very wary of pesticides and some of the fertilisers, particularly in areas where the soil has never been allowed to rest and has been intensively farmed for years.

And compare organic free range chicken to ordinary chicken and there is a world of difference. My dh compained that the chickens at the farmer market were on average £1 - £2 more than supermarket chickens, until I did a side by side test of them, he's now a convert. And the eggs, what a huge difference.

The first organic thing I ever ate (knowingly) was a banana, and I just couldn't believe the difference in flavour, it was astounding.
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Old 10-09-2004, 07:20 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonr
Are you sure you don't mean hydrogenated vegetable oil? This is extremely unhealthy to be sure, but it's hardly limited to processed food; if you ever bake with vegetable shortening, that is the same thing. My feeling is that home baked treats are just as unhealthy as store-bought. The only difference is I know what kind of junk I'm putting into my home-made products, whereas the store-bought stuff is a little harder to gauge because of the obscure language on the ingredient list.

As for the whole pesticide issue, VERY disturbing...
Thanks jasonr for correcting me, you are correct. I'm blond, need I say more?????
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