Real Food Rehab

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For the last 1.5 years I have been buying about 80% of my produce from organic markets. With 4 people in our household it gets VERY expensive. 

For example I can buy conventional cabbage for .69c or organic for $6.50 or

celery conventional for under $1 or organic for $7.50. These are HUGE differences in prices.

I do know of the dirty dozen and I try buy these things organic.

One of the main draw cards for me buying organic is that it is not sprayed with chemicals etc so most of the time I just look over the greens and if they are not dirty or got any insects on them I don't bother washing them as I think its clean. 

I juice and make smoothies so much that washing every leaf of something would take me forever. Also greens are not something you should wash and then store for a later date!!

What do others do? I am now worried about catching parasites and nasties simply because its organic produce and nothing is killed off with chemicals.

I am now wondering if it's all worth it. Maybe buying conventional is the better way as its heaps cheaper and I still got to wash it all anyway.

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Replies to This Discussion

Organic does not always mean Organic. If it is comming Chile, Mexico, or Thailand you can never be sure. Just like "Free range chicken" only means they open the door to the coup once a week. Organic only pays off if it something that is usually sprayed or is thin skinned or where you eat the outside. There are many website where you can see the produce that is the most heavily sprayed and those are the onces that need to be cleaned. Also, buying local when you can will allow to to ask the farmer how they treat their fields.  Then again, there are just some foods you shouldn't eat and avoiding those all together may protect you from disease.

I still clean my organics, the only difference is I don't peel things like cucumbers and such like I do with conventional items. I add vinegar and baking soda to a sink full of water and put my produce in it. I think for me it's the people handling and storing/shipping that worry me more than bugs. If I pick something out of my own garden I just give it a rinse under that tap to get any dirt off.

I don't go to crazy cleaning my produce and I've been eating like this for 9 years and nothing has happened to me yet.  I will say that the prices you pay are crazy.  Sometimes we can find organics cheaper than conventional.  7.50 for celery is insane and so is 6.50 for cabbage.  I would not buy those items at those prices.  Wait until the prices fall when more in season.  My grocery bill is already 3-350 per week for my family of 4.  That is with celery at 2-3. depending on season.  Don't buy thick skinned foods organic.  If something is way over priced and i want it then I buy it conventional.  Right now red peppers are in the 4$ range for organic so I have been buying them but often they are $6 lb. and then I won't. 

Thanks Sally, how long do you soak your veges in this solution for? And how much baking powder/ water/ vinegar do you use for a sink full?

Sally R said:

I still clean my organics, the only difference is I don't peel things like cucumbers and such like I do with conventional items. I add vinegar and baking soda to a sink full of water and put my produce in it. I think for me it's the people handling and storing/shipping that worry me more than bugs. If I pick something out of my own garden I just give it a rinse under that tap to get any dirt off.

Thanks Katy, Yes the prices are ridiculous. I just got back from my local organic markets today and the cabbages were $5 each and I got 2. Because I make a probiotic drink from them so buying organic is important I feel.

I am in Australia!! I do try buy in season. I certainly can never afford to buy berries organic they are usually around $6 for a tiny tub. Cucumbers from $5 - $7.50. Kale is $4.5o - $5 a bunch. Its all so expensive. Thanks for your input.

Katy said:

I don't go to crazy cleaning my produce and I've been eating like this for 9 years and nothing has happened to me yet.  I will say that the prices you pay are crazy.  Sometimes we can find organics cheaper than conventional.  7.50 for celery is insane and so is 6.50 for cabbage.  I would not buy those items at those prices.  Wait until the prices fall when more in season.  My grocery bill is already 3-350 per week for my family of 4.  That is with celery at 2-3. depending on season.  Don't buy thick skinned foods organic.  If something is way over priced and i want it then I buy it conventional.  Right now red peppers are in the 4$ range for organic so I have been buying them but often they are $6 lb. and then I won't. 

Thanks Arthur,

I buy from a organic market and the produce is coming from within my state in QLD Australia  or just out of. Its all certified organic and when I buy pepitas or quinoa I always make sure its not from China etc....

Arthur in the Garden! said:

Organic does not always mean Organic. If it is comming Chile, Mexico, or Thailand you can never be sure. Just like "Free range chicken" only means they open the door to the coup once a week. Organic only pays off if it something that is usually sprayed or is thin skinned or where you eat the outside. There are many website where you can see the produce that is the most heavily sprayed and those are the onces that need to be cleaned. Also, buying local when you can will allow to to ask the farmer how they treat their fields.  Then again, there are just some foods you shouldn't eat and avoiding those all together may protect you from disease.

Hey Ten, I use about 1/2 cup white vinegar. I have a double sink, so if you have just one big sink maybe a cup. I just started added baking soda and threw in some maybe 1/8th of a cup, not much really.

I use to get all twisted up about buying organic, but it's not doable for all my food so I buy what I can and not worry about it. The only store within walking distance doesn't have organics (I don't have a car right now). I get to a big store once a month and buy whatever organcis they have that I use. I am on a really tight budget also.

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