I grew up in NJ - the "Garden State" - and now live in Iowa, where yes, I've heard every corn and cow joke known to man.
However, it wasn't until I lived in the Midwest that I began to really look at where the food I was feeding my family was coming from. My move out here coincided with my crash into the gluten-free Whole Foods lifestyle we now live and it seems like the timing was almost perfect in a way.
In order to reduce the artificial ingredients, hormones, and pesticides going into our bodies, we began buying grass-fed meat, local farm-fresh eggs, and organic produce.
We also began to support local farmers and merchants and began doing
most of our weekly shopping at the farmer's market where we could. We
can get everything from free-range chickens to salad greens to fresh
goat cheese to homemade jams and salsa to hand-knitted scarves and hats and - my favorite - the
Our children love coming with us and on the warm spring and summer
days, we sip tea or lemonade as we walk up and down the aisles, talking
to the farmers who grew the food, eating local fresh fruits and veggies.
It's such a great learning experience and they learn what Real Food is,
where it comes from, how to make healthy choices, and support local
I know that these products can be more expensive and I understand that not everyone can always afford these options.But
there's also some products like strawberries and apples that I think
should be bought organic whenever possible due to the way pesticides can
leak in through the porous fruit or sit on the skin we eat.When
in doubt on which organic produce is the most important, I refer to The
Dirty Dozen - a list of the 12 fruits and vegetables with the highest
I've also found that simply by meeting and talking with the local
farmers, you can learn their farming practices, and though they may not
be "certified organic" (a process that is very rigorous), they may use
organic farming practices. This is another great reason to get out to
the farmer's market when you can!
Do you have a local farmer's market that you visit? Do you buy
organic or local products from your supermarket? Do you teach your kids
where their food comes from?
I grew up with my mother going most years to the FM and freezing food and stocking up for the winter....I have not been in years to the Farmer's Market and I have not really tried a lot of organic foods....thanks for the info.