Ask Your Grocer
Clarify Your Food Choices
I wonder about the difference between “organically grown” and “conventionally grown” produce at the grocery store. Being an introvert, I never ask about it. I started researching online and found myself overwhelmed with competing information. I see information that reads like marketing based on fear and self-promotion on every side of the “organic vs conventionally” grown debate.
I have my personal opinions
I haven’t updated these opinions or perspectives in a long time.
Today I’m putting on my “big girl boots”, pushing through my introversion and asking my grocers directly what these designations mean. I shop at a few different stores and farmers’ markets, I want to know exactly what is going on in my little world.
Together We Can!
I’m asking you to join me in the pursuit of real information about the produce in our stores. Below is my list of questions that I’m taking with me on my journey toward concrete, “real-time” information. I’m sharing them with you in case you need a little support to do the same.
Ask Your Grocer:
- What is the difference between this product (apple, lettuce, carrot, etc) labeled “organic” and the ones labeled “conventional”?
- Can you give me a list of the fertilizers and pesticides used during the production of these vegetables/fruits? (I want the list so that I can research things on my own) Just like clear labeling on canned foods I want to know the “ingredients” of my produce.
- For meat products: What is the difference between “organic, grass-fed, natural, conventional?” If hormones, drugs, or chemicals are used in the meat I am buying and eating, can you please give me a list of them so that I can research them on my own?
It seems crazy to wonder about the ingredients of fresh produce, meat, and seafood. But this is the world we live in now. I will share my answers as I get them and I hope you will too in the comments below.
So far I have asked three different produce people at different grocery stores my questions.
Here is what I’ve learned so far:
Conventional uses “things” to boost growth and deter pests.
No one has been able to tell me what those “things” are. One person told me to go to the company website and search. I looked around on the Dole Fruit website for information but couldn’t find anything. One produce person told me that finding this information is very challenging.
They all said that organic means you can’t use the chemicals that conventional growers can use.
Below is a website I just found that talks about some of the chemicals used by conventional growers. You can search by the product you are purchasing and see some results of tests that tell you how much of a particular chemical is found on that product.
What’s on my Food?