Tweenie’s Greenies

Week 3: Eat It, on Purpose

How many times don’t we all go to the supermarket to get goods to feed our family?  How many times don’t we load our carts with deliciously waxed and over processed produce/foods because they are on sale and convenient?  I do it all the time.  I don’t get a chance to go to several places for my groceries since the addition of the second and third child.  I just don’t have time.  So, I end up buying what ever is at the supermarket and go ignorantly merrily along my way. 

What I never stopped to consider if how far the food I am buying has traveled.  Where has it been?  What’s been on it?  Who grew it?  Is my purchase benefiting a cause or process I would agree with?  I have just consumed in the past with little to no thought.  Well, ignorant no longer, I am determined to be a better, healthier, more environmentally friendly person.  Therefore, I am going to try and buy food that is truly fresh and food that supports producers in my area or preparation practices that are better for my family and the environment.

Produce generally would spoil fast unless it is treated by “unnatural” processes.  Depending on the season, the fresh produce in your grocery may have been on the road for thousands of miles and for about 10 days.  To do this, things like bananas and tomatoes are picked while still green.  Then they are chilled, warmed, and treated with gases to make them ripen.  Fresh is all relative in the supermarket.  That’s why produce from the store, usually tastes so different from that in the garden.  Plus, don’t get me started on how the food is treated with chemicals as it is grown.

Produce

Here are some steps that I am going to take while shopping for my families groceries.

1.  Pick My Own:  No, not my nose, my fruits and vegetables.  It’s summertime and there are many farms in our area where I can pick my own fruit and veggies that are in season.  For example, right now blueberries are ripe for the picking.  I can walk right out into the field with my bucket and bring it right home to my table.  Maybe 10 miles travel time.  Plus, I am able to inquire about the growing process and select organic.  Plus, Plus, I can support local growers and the local economy.  Whew!  That’s a lot of good from one action.

2.  Buy local produce:  If I am at the store, I won’t buy strawberries grown in California, when I can buy locally grown strawberries.  This is for basically the same reasons as above.  Even better than the store, I can buy at the cities Farmers Market.  The kids love to go and help pick out the produce.  Usually, they are even allowed to try different veggies and fruits for free as we contemplate our purchases and chat with the local growers.

3.  Buy Organic:  For all the obvious reasons.  I will try to pick out organic produce/food items.  Here’s a list posted by Mama Speaks as to the dozen foods that you should always buy organic.

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