The other day, I stopped into the ‘regular’ grocery store which I frequent when I need things that are not found at the farmer’s market or healthy food shop, like cleaning supplies or toothpaste.
It was just shortly before dinner and I was feeling just a touch peckish, so I headed over to the produce section to find the perfect green bell pepper to chomp on as a quick pre-meal snack.
I paused as I passed by the apple section, merely because of all the variety of apples that were offered. There were far more varieties of apples to choose from and I, being as engaged in the topic as I am, felt compelled to see which were organic and how far each had traveled.
If that didn’t open pandora’s box, I don’t know what would.
I don’t imagine it could possibly be more confusing for a typical consumer.
Do you go with the local apples that are not organic?
Or maybe the apples that are organic but have been flown from New Zealand to California?
Yikes. Not a cut and dry decision. Certain produce, that always should be eaten from an organic source, like strawberries, might offer an easier decision, but in the case of an apple, one might safely opt for the local yet conventional choice.
I feel our nation is bit greedy as a whole, given the fact that we can easily have access to nearly any fruit, or vegetable, or fish, or any food, for that matter, at a second’s notice in most physical or online sources.
It’s not necessary.
Last month in Hawaii, for example, I found plenty of local, fresh, pineapple, papaya, mango and bananas at my hotel’s restaurant. Right next to that fruit, was a platter of blueberries from Oregon, strawberries from California and oranges from Florida. As if there weren’t already plenty of other good options!
Getting back to the question of which the better choice would be- the local, conventional, or organic but from far away apples, I’d have to say neither.
Instead, I’d find out which fruits are available from a organic source and which is seasonally appropriate and local, the latter two of which will also help to reduce the cost incurred from the first.
Just as much as we’re meant to be eating fresh, natural foods, we’re also meant to be eating them from where we physically are and at a particular time of year when they are naturally available.
Not doing so is about as Paleo as those darned ‘paleo pancakes and breads’ that aren’t really Paleo either, but I’ll stop here before going off on that tangent again!