Organic vs Conventional

by in Know Your Food January 12, 2014

Organic produce generally tends to be more expensive than other conventionally grown options. The big question:

Is Organic Better for You?

  1. What has been shown in the scientific literature about pesticide exposure and children?
  2. What if I wash my conventionally grown fruits and veggies really well to get rid of the pesticide residues?
    • This helps get rid of some of the residue, but unfortunately this practice doesn’t work well because the pesticides absorb into the produce’s deeper layers.
  3. We generally think of organic meaning “no pesticides,” what else does organic mean?
    • Not only should we be concerned about pesticides, but we also need to be concerned about Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). And right now, the only way to know if your products are GMO free is to buy organic.
  4. Aren’t there more nutrients in organic produce?
    • The jury is still out. Some studies have shown that organics have more nutrients and other studies have shown no difference compared to conventional produce. And the reason is this: most companies who can afford the “USDA Organic” label are huge corporate companies, operating as an organic subsidiary. In order for nutrient rich produce, the soil must be turned and crops rotated. Large companies do not practice this.
  5. Should I be worried about these large companies’ organic practices?  Absolutely, as an example check out:
  6. Does all my produce have to be organic?
    • Nope!  Each year, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) puts out a list of the 12+ foods that contain the most pesticide residue- The Dirty Dozen. Cross check the dirty dozen list with the current list of GMOs.  Make sure the conventional produce you purchase is on neither of those lists.

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1.  Buy from your local farmers’ market!  Small farms generally cannot afford the “USDA Organic” label, but many still practice organic farming.  And their farming practices are much more impressive, and yes, they crop rotate.

To find a Farmers’ Market in your area:

  1. Local Harvest
  2. Local Farm Markets

2.  Even if you don’t have a green thumb, you can still grow your own.  It’s super easy, almost effortless, and your kids will LOVE participating!!
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Organic vs Conventional Resources

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