Are Orgainc Foods Better? Lindsey S.

5 09 2008

The other day my mother asked me to bake a pie.  So I decided to make an apple pie.  Now I’m at the grocery store and I have to apples in my hand, green, shiny, and firm, but one was cheaper and the other was more expensive but it had a “USDA” sticker on it.  So I began thinking what does that exactly mean?  So I am writing my paper based upon that.  Does that mean it’s safer? Better tasting? More nutritious?

            The word “organic” refers to they way that farmers grow and process agricultural products.  Things such as fruits vegetables, dairy products, and meats.  Organic farming practices are designed to encourage soil and water conservation and reduce pollution.  Farmers who grow organic produce don’t use conventional methods to fertilize either.  Instead of using chemical weed killers and pesticides they use mulch or manure to keep the weeds away.  Also they carry out a sophisticated crop rotation process.

            In my research I found that you have some things that you should consider when buying organic food over conventionally grown food.  Some of the facts that you should consider are Nutrition.  So far there has been no evidence that shows organic food is more nutritious than conventionally grown food.  Even though that USDA certifies organic food, doesn’t mean that these products are safer or more nutritious. Quality and appearance is anther thing to consider.  Organic foods have to meet the same quality and safety standards as conventional foods. The difference is how the food it’s produced, processed, and handled.  Some may find that organic fruits and vegetables might spoil faster, because they haven’t been treated with waxes or preservatives like conventional food. 

            Conventional farmers use pesticides to protect their crops from, molds insects, and diseases.  Sometimes a residue is left on the produce in this process. So some people prefer organic food over conventional food because it limits their exposure to these residues.  However most experts agree that the amount of pesticides left on the fruits or vegetables poses a very small health risk. Most organic foods cost more than conventional food products.  This is because the process in farming organic foods is more expensive, with more government regulations and lower crop yields.  Also because they don’t use herbicides or pesticides, the might hand picks the weeds, so then you pay for the labor fees.  Also some people buy organic foods for environmental reasons.  Organic farming is designed to be better on the environment by reducing pollutions and conserving water and soil.   One of the last things to look for is taste.  Now some people say that they can taste a difference between the two conventional and organic. Others like me say that they find no difference.  Now taste is all about your personal preference what might taste amazing to me, might be the worst thing that you have ever tasted.  So you need to decide for yourself, but whether you buy organic or not finding the freshest foods may have a big impact on taste.

            Now in my research I wanted to find out is organic food really better, than conventionally grown food, and during the first part of my research it really didn’t seem that it was that much better. The only way that I would maybe buy organic foods is for the environment and the pesticides reasons that really only got me.  But then I started talking to my sister and she swears by Whole Foods.  They had just built one not too far from my house to I decided to check it out and she what the big deal about this place was because they are going up everywhere in Chicago.   When I went there I found about the same information that I was reading about.  The items are more expensive, the look and taste the same as conventionally grown foods.

So I have come to the conclusion that there really is not a huge difference between organic food and conventionally grown food.  Being a college student only working part-time, with bills to pay in my opinion I don’t see the need to spend the extra money on organic foods, now knowing that they really aren’t that much healthier for you, nor do the taste different. 

Now I am not the biggest health nut, but by doing my reading I became a little concerned about the pesticides on the food that I eat.  In my research that I did they said that there is a very low risk of becoming sick from the pesticides.  But I did also learn if you are concerned about them there are some things that you can do to lower the risk even more from conventional food.  Not only by thoroughly washing your food before eating, you can peel your fruits and vegetables.  In the meats the pesticide residues collects in fats, so by trimming or removing the fats on meats and the skin from poultry and fish will help cut back on the risk of getting sick from pesticides.

So in conclusion organic foods are not necessarily better, or more nutritious.  They might be just a tiny bit safer for you and the environment.  But by having they are better for the environment the cost of organic foods is more than conventionally grown foods.  So my question to you is it really worth it?  For me I don’t think so, but you decide for yourself. But you might want to consider, do you get sick easy? Do you want to spend the extra few dollars, to be on the safe side?  You decide, but with my research I have decided for me, organic foods are no big deal.  I will sick with the conventionally grown foods.

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