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    Let’s begin by acknowledging that growing fruit and vegetables organically is a step in the right direction and something worthy of appreciation. Without a doubt, in terms of a healthy diet, organic versions are better than potentially ingesting a plethora of agrochemicals that have proven negative effects. However, in terms of sustainability, organic alone is not the ideal solution. Like mass agricultural of any ilk, industrialized organic produce has its pitfalls and scars on the land. While it may be the best option many of us currently have, if we are looking for the planet and human existence on it to be at its most harmonious, we have to explore more fundamental solutions. With that in mind, it’s time to explore why the organic section of the supermarket may not be as wholesome as we’d like to believe. And, more so, we should dive into what it is we—as stewards of the earth—could be doing better. Organic is not necessarily local. Just like other industrialized agricultural products, organic produce can be grown halfway across the world and accumulate...
    When you go to the grocery store to stock up on fresh fruits and veggies, which of the two do you often buy: conventional or organic? Organic foods often come at a premium price, so many Americans find conventional produce to be the most affordable and accessible option. While organic is often advertised as the better option of the two, a new report suggests that the label doesn’t necessarily imply it’s the safest option. RELATED: The 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), an agency that leads international efforts to end hunger, recently published a new report Organic Foods: Are They Safer that puts into question whether the organic label guarantees food safety. Why buy organic? As the abstract of the report points out that, in the eyes of consumers, organic agriculture is often viewed as a healthier, safer, and more environmentally conscious way of producing food. While this is most often the case, the FAO addresses one key piece of information that you may not think about. garden produce...
    New York : Less than 2 percent of the avocado samples showed detectable pesticides. Photo: Franklin Andrés Hernández / Pexels Eating organic foods reduces exposure to pesticides, but these products are not always accessible to everyone. Each year the Environmental Working Group (EWG) rates the pesticide contamination of 46 popular fruits and vegetables, guiding consumers to know which are the most contaminated and which ones are the cleanest. The 2021 list of the cleanest agricultural products includes 15 fruits and vegetables grown conventionally with those with the lowest amounts of pesticide residues. The EWG notes that nearly 70 percent of the cleanest “Clean Fifteen” fruit and vegetable samples had no pesticide residues. 15 fruits and vegetables cleaner from pesticides 1. Avocados and sweet corn Avocados and sweet corn are the cleanest vegetables. Less than 2 percent of the samples showed detectable pesticides. 2. Pineapple Pineapple is a source of vitamin C (contributes to the protection of cells against oxidative damage) and iodine (contributes to normal energy metabolism and the production of thyroid hormones and...
    By Sandee LaMotte | CNN Strawberries continue to lead the “Dirty Dozen” list of fruits and veggies that contain the highest levels of pesticides, followed by spinach, a trio of greens — kale, collard and mustard — nectarines, apples, and grapes, according to the Environmental Working Group’s 2021 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce. Cherries came in seventh on the list of the 46 most contaminated foods, followed by peaches, pears, bell and hot peppers, celery, and tomatoes. Avoiding pesticides is especially critical for babies and children, experts say, because of the damage they can cause to the developing brain. A 2020 study found an increase in IQ loss and intellectual disability in children due to exposure to organophosphates, a common class of pesticides. The report also offers consumers a list of the “Clean Fifteen” — foods with the least amount of pesticides. Nearly 70% of the “Clean” fruit and vegetable samples had no pesticide residues, making them a safer choice, EWG says. “Multiple pesticide residues are extremely rare on Clean Fifteen vegetables,” the EWG report stated. “Only 8 percent...
    PHILADELPHIA -- Strawberries continue to lead the "Dirty Dozen" list of fruits and veggies that contain the highest levels of pesticides, followed by spinach, a trio of greens -- kale, collard and mustard -- nectarines, apples, and grapes, according to the Environmental Working Group's 2021 Shopper's Guide to Pesticides in Produce.Cherries came in seventh on the list of the 46 most contaminated foods, followed by peaches, pears, bell and hot peppers, celery, and tomatoes.Avoiding pesticides is especially critical for babies and children, experts say, because of the damage they can cause to the developing brain. A 2020 study found an increase in IQ loss and intellectual disability in children due to exposure to organophosphates, a common class of pesticides.The report also offers consumers a list of the "Clean Fifteen" -- foods with the least amount of pesticides. Nearly 70% of the "Clean" fruit and vegetable samples had no pesticide residues, making them a safer choice, EWG says."Multiple pesticide residues are extremely rare on Clean Fifteen vegetables," the EWG report stated. "Only 8 percent of Clean Fifteen fruit and vegetable samples...
    Jacob Chansley, the so-called “QAnon Shaman” arrested for storming the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, has filed an emergency motion before a federal judge in Washington, D.C., “for sustenance.” In the alternative, Chansley is asking to be released from jail pending trial. The requests are related to Chansley’s belief in Shamanism, a religion which he says allows him to eat only organic food as a core tenant of practice. The motion, filed by attorney Al Watkins, mirrors requests for organic food which Watkins made during a plea hearing last week.  Chansley pleaded not guilty to charges related to the siege. Included in the motion are handwritten requests by Chansley to prison officials for organic food.  In the requests, dated Jan. 27, Chansley states that he has “eaten only organic food for the past 8 years.” “Because of my being a Shamanic practitioner, I only eat traditional food that has been made by God.  This means no GMO’s, herbicides, pesticides, or artificial preservatives or artificial colors,” Chansley continued.  “I have not eaten anything since Monday morning @ approx. 8:15 a.m.  Being w/o...
    Growing vegetables isn’t the simple, all natural process that it used to be. Or at least, this is the case when it comes to large-scale, industrial farming. While growing tomatoes or blueberries in your backyard may only require diligent watering, protection from squirrels and a little sunshine, attempting to produce thousands upon thousands of these same foods, while avoiding insects, disease and other variables is far more complicated. In an effort to make our food system as “fool proof” as possible, industrial agriculture has developed a few tricks. And by tricks, we mean industrial grade chemicals that ward off insects, fungus, invasive plants, and a myriad of other “pesky” intruders. This ensures that the maximum amount of produce can be shipped to consumers across the country (and world at that) with minimal wormholes and other nasty blemishes that might deter their consumption. Pesticides, including insecticides, rodenticides, herbicides, fungicides and antimicrobials are all used to grow today’s non-organic fruits and vegetables. While these chemicals help to protect farmer’s yields, they can be incredibly harmful to people and the environment. Human Concerns...
    Sometimes greenhouses aren’t as efficient as you would think, says Brian Smith. And after five years of working in one, Smith thought he could do better. So he started looking up. Smith Family Greens is a vertical farm that specializes in soon-to-be certified organic microgreens for sale to restaurant distributors. The space, which holds 8,000 square feet of growing surfaces, a fully sealed environment made specifically for micro-greens, arugula and kale. Smith believes that the sustainable model is not only better for the environment, but it also helps cut costs and keeps their product safe from contamination. It’s a farm without a horizon, a small world of its own reaching towards the ceiling. The room hums with lights, fans and water purifiers. There’s a slight humidity from the hundreds of leafy vegetables that grow row after row in a highrise made for plants. The greens, nestled in organic soil, are held within styrofoam seed trays that float in nutrient infused water bays.Related Stories Incredible Edibles: The Small Farm Stand With Big Community Fermented Food Producer Invites You to Join Fermentation...
    By KRISTI MAROHN, Minnesota Public Radio News SEBEKA, Minn. (AP) — It’s hard to see how anyone could coax anything green from this sandy patch of Minnesota soil. But Kathy Connell can. Most of the vegetables have already been harvested from her vast garden, but a few plump watermelons and cucumbers still peek out from beneath the leaves. Farming this dry patch of rural Wadena County takes patience, dedication — and water. “It is just sand. The only thing that really grows well on it are pine trees,” Connell said. “You have to restore and add additional organic matter. You have to apply water, because three days without rain are a drought on this sand.” On these 2 acres of land, Connell produced organic vegetables that she sold for years at farmers’ markets and whole foods stores. At 74, she’s scaling back and now mainly grows vegetables for her own family. She remains a staunch advocate for growing as much of your own food as possible, Minnesota Public Radio News reported. “I think it makes food sacred to you then,”...
    SAN ANTONIO – Eat your broccoli, but consider organic when it comes to green beans and peaches. That’s one takeaway from Consumer Reports' ratings and report on pesticides and produce. CR analyzed government data from tests on various fruits and vegetables collected from 2014-2018 and found food for thought. “A lot of times, even when pesticides are found on produce, the levels aren’t worrisome,” said CR Health Editor Catherine Roberts. “But, in a few cases, our experts did find that the amounts exceeded what we consider to be safe.” Industry groups say that pesticide residue on food does not pose a risk, but some research has linked long-term, low-level exposure to pesticides to cognitive development, ADHD, and cancer. The solution, CR says, is not to eat less produce as it’s some of the healthiest food we consume and many people already don’t get the recommended amounts. Rather, they say, it’s important to make the best choices. To help consumers identify which produce poses the biggest risk for pesticides, they rated a few dozen fruits and vegetables. “We broke down our...
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