Thursday, April 24, 2008

More info on baby food pesticides

Here are a few articles that I found on the pesticides in baby food:

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?sec=health&res=990CE2D9153BF935A15754C0A963958260

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/health-fitness/exercise-wellness/consumer-reports-why-organic-baby-food-is-safer-106/overview/

http://www.babycenter.com/0_pesticides-in-your-babys-food-what-you-need-to-know_1408813.bc

I just googled "pesticides baby food", there were more articles too but I wanted to highlight more "credible", mainstream sources. The article from consumer reports looked like it even broke down which things to buy "organic" vs. conventional if cost is an issue. I would highly suggest people visit the Farmer's Market on Power just south of Elliot here in Gilbert. T.J. and Julie are the owners, they can tell you which local products are pesticide free and which aren't. And, the produce is much cheaper than "certified" organic. The main point is not eating pesticides, I could care less whether someone has the certified seal because quite honestly, that does not mean much more than they paid the $50,000 fee to be certified. There is a "certified organic" farmer who just bought 40 acres in Chandler and is going to be planting on it. Up until last year it was farmed cotton which means crop dusting. That doesn't sound very organic to me since it takes years for the pesticides to diminish. The local farmers who live and breathe farming are not happy with this whole certification process since many have always farmed without pesticides yet cannot afford the fee and then miss out on being able to charge more for their products. Or join an organic food co-op. I belonged to Protea Produce http://www.protealife.com/Organic_Produce.html. It was great, you could pick the size basket you wanted and then every two weeks you got a new basket brimming with organic produce. The large basket was $50. It was a TON of stuff. My main reason for quitting was that I frequently got things that we did not use often and quite honestly, I never made time to find a use for them before they went bad. And, I still had to get staples (bananas, lettuce, cucs, etc) that we run out of every few days. It seemed easier and more cost effective to go to the Farmer's Market for us.

If you can, steam and puree your own baby food. You don't need a real expensive food processor or a lot of supplies. Freeze puree in ice cube trays or old glass baby food jars for quick meals for your little one. I did big batches and just froze them in the trays, emptied the trays into big Ziplocs and labeled the food and date and it worked really well.

Wonder what to buy organic vs. conventional? I go by this rule: If it has a thick peel you can go conventionally grown, just make sure you peel it first (bananas, cucs). If it does not have a thick peel, especially root veggies (strawberries, apples, carrots and potatoes), try and go organic as much as you can. But, that consumer reports site had a good breakdown. I hope that helps!

We have our garden going and I would encourage everyone to try one. A raised bed, some drip irrigation and a little time keeping the pests at bay can give you a bountiful harvest for very little money, and you know exactly what is not in or on your produce. We have tomatoes, corn, stevia, herbs, peppers and asparagus going. I love going out and harvesting our food, one of these days I am going to have a real farm, lol. I am sure people are laughing at me, there are many who would be very surprised to hear me say that!

2 comments:

Mary said...

Thanks for all the great info! I wish Gerber and other baby food brands were more up front about what's really in that stuff. no wonder it doesn't taste like "normal" food! I have found a few books I like about making your own baby food if anyone else out there needs help:

"The healthy baby meal planner" and "fresh start cworkbook."

I would love to see and hear more about your garden!

P.S. Nice job with your race! WOW!

Sherri said...

We love going to harvest veggies out of our garden. Our strawberries are doing great too, right now. Though I suspect their days are numbered!

I would love to hear more about your composting -- how you do it, etc.

I hope you do get to be a farmer one day! I'd buy from ya!