A diary of the projects, hurdles, rewards and family life at we recorded at Wise Acres, our former homestead in Horsefly, BC. (Careers and teenagers have forced us back into the city, at least for a little while.)

Monday, March 28, 2011

Why I Choose Organic

I am an organic food consumer and an organic food producer.  Because of this, I sometimes get a lot of flack.  From my friends, my family and even people I hardly know.  Yet still...whenever I can I will choose organic.  This is my choice...others make different choices...but often I get questioned about why?  or challenged...in the form of "what is the point of buying organic when it is only 85% of the ingredients?"  or "you know that fields that are considered organic get pesticide blown onto them from neighbouring fields"  or "why would you pay double just because it is 'organic'" or "you wouldn't be able to buy it at the grocery store if it wasn't safe to eat".

In my twenties, I started to learn about food industry practices, specifically the treatment and handling of animals.  We stopped eating animal products for about a year, until I got pregnant and food cravings drove me back to meat.  After the birth of my first daughter, we began to educate ourselves about what is in all of our foods.  We noticed huge differences in her behaviour when she ate certain foods, mostly those with significant additives and coloring.  I began to read and devoured books like "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" and "In Defense of Food" and later "Nourishing Traditions".  The more I read, the more passionate I became about what I fed my family.  One of the major reasons we decided to move to Horsefly, was to start gaining more control over our food supply by producing as much of it ourselves as we could. We have grown chickens, pigs, turkeys and a variety of vegetables in our garden. It is very satisfying to be able to skip entire sections of the grocery store!

Intuitively I know organic is just better...even if it is not perfect but I don't always have the facts at hand to answer questions or the eloquence to articulate my passion.  Recently I came across the Ted talk given by food advocate Robyn O'Brien .  I found her presentation so inspiring.  Please take some time and check it out.

I was wrestling with whether or not to raise chickens this year and if I did, if I really wanted to fork over double the feed costs to raise them organically again. After hearing about the corn and soy manipulation in that video, I have all the more conviction to avoid conventional or even 'natural' feeds, since they are made up of a large proportion of these ingredients.

A big Thank you to Robyn O'Brien, Joel Salatin, Michael Pollan, Barbara Kingsolver, Eliot Coleman, Helen and Scott Nearing and (less famous but inspiring to me personally) Rainer and Gigi Krumsiek, who have generously shared their knowledge, experience and wisdom and keep the rest of us inspired.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Joanne,

    I was lucky enough to go to a talk by Percy Schmeiser this weekend (truly amazing man!) and now I am more determined than ever to avoid anything to do with GM seeds/crops. I'll be interested to watch the video you posted. This is something that we really need to be aware of. The boys and I are just reading Michael Pollan's Omnivore's Dilemma: Young Readers Edition together because it is important to me that they are very aware of what is going on in our food system too.