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Parents who CHOOSE not to eat/feed their family organic - Page 7

post #121 of 183
Unless they have really studied it, most people don't understand it.

A lot of people think that only the overprotective freaky tree huggers are buying organic, and they don't want to appear "freaky, tree huggerish".

They haven't given in to the hype yet???

Jillian Michaels has a new book out called "mastering your metabolism" and she talks about organic foods (and houshold/body products) in a way that even a nontree hugger would appreciate.
post #122 of 183
Different people have different priorities for their budgets. When you say people could "afford" to buy organic, what does that mean? Where I live, buying all organic would double my grocery budget easily.

I could "afford" to buy all organic, but I'd prefer to send my kids to college.
post #123 of 183
See, and I have friends on the other side of spectrum that are so PRO-organic that it's borderline obnoxious. These people push it to the point where I know others have felt that they are crappy parents when they don't buy organic. And really, buying organic does not make you a good parent. I get the idea of it, I understand why organic is better, but I also think you have to do what works best for your family.

For us, organic 100% of the time would mean that we wouldn't be able to afford other necessities. I buy specific things organically (veggies or fruits that absorb chemicals more, like potatoes etc), and other things like bananas or oranges, I buy non-organic. For a family who doesn't have a ton of money, buying organic 100% of the time, is just not plausible.

The other thing I do, is read labels. I don't buy things that have a list a mile long of ingredients that are not necessary. I try to buy all natural products/organic products for DS, and in the summer, I scope out the farmer markets for local produce.

It's all about priorities. For us, having enough food to feed DS and ourselves trumps buying all organic products. We have a good balance, and it works.

Quote:
Where I live, buying all organic would double my grocery budget easily.

I could "afford" to buy all organic, but I'd prefer to send my kids to college.
Yeah, I'm curious where you shop? Our organic sections in our grocery stores here are limited, and to top that, they are way overpriced. For instance, I can get a LB of banana's for .78 or less in the non-organic section. Organic bananas? At LEAST $2-3 a LB. DS eats bananas like they are going out of style, so to have to buy as many as I do, I'd end up with mainly bananas in our produce budget, and not much else. Other items like yogurt, and such, I can get a pack of yogurt, sweetened with natural fruit juice for 5 bucks, and there are 12 decent sized containers in them. The organic stuff? I can get a small container for $5, or 4 tiny containers for $4. Again, this is a staple in our house, and if I bought the organic ones, we'd easily be paying $15 + a week for yogurt alone!

It's not cheap to buy organically, and I think it stinks that some people think that those who don't buy organically are ignorant. We try to do it, but we have to balance things out, and as much as I would LOVE to buy all organically, it's just not plausible for us.
post #124 of 183
I definitely prefer local (produce, meat, cheese) to supermarket organic. Our first stop each week is the farmer's market. I've talked a lot with the vendors there, and I know many of them avoid chemical pesticides, but are not officially "organic" because of the cost of organic certification.

For things we don't get at the farmer's market, the question of organic or not depends on the item. Dd has severe food allergies, so we generally do not feed her any animal products that contain antibiotics. In many cases, this means buying organic, but not only--Applegate Farms, for instance, has antibiotic-free, hormone-free turkey breast that is 2/3 of the price of the certified organic of the same brand. We buy organic cheese, because she eats a ton of it, but not organic milk (which is more than twice the price), because she consumes only very small amounts (a splash in her oatmeal, milk in occasional baked treats, etc.). Most produce we buy organic, but not things like bananas, where she's not eating the skin and there are lower levels of pesticide residue.

We certainly do get plenty of "health food" that isn't so healthy! A cookie made with brown rice syrup is healthier than one made with HFCS, but it's certainly not a health food.

But I think that, if you strip the value judgement implicit in the OP as regards to parenting, she does raise a valid point: why do Americans eat so many foods (and often in great quantities or with great frequency) when we KNOW that they're bad for us? I think there are a lot of reasons--convenience, flavor, habit, cost--but it is sometimes amazing to me that many people (including myself, at times) knowingly fill their bodies with junk.
post #125 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by EFmom View Post
Different people have different priorities for their budgets. When you say people could "afford" to buy organic, what does that mean? Where I live, buying all organic would double my grocery budget easily.

I could "afford" to buy all organic, but I'd prefer to send my kids to college.
I've only read the first and last page of this thread, but I agree with this. I could afford to buy all organic, but then my food bill would go from $1,000 to $2,000 a month (we eat tons of fruits and meat and organic is at least double the price). That would be $1,000 that i would not be putting in the kids 529 plans.

Plus, I am not sold that organic is really that much better for you. And like others mentioned on the first page, I like convenience foods. I work full time and when I get home, I don't want to spend a long time cooking. I'd rather have that time to play with the kids.
post #126 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by EFmom View Post
Different people have different priorities for their budgets. When you say people could "afford" to buy organic, what does that mean? Where I live, buying all organic would double my grocery budget easily.

I could "afford" to buy all organic, but I'd prefer to send my kids to college.
I think it would be more than double for us. Most produce is pretty close to double, and so is dairy. But, meat is more than double - quite a bit more. I still want to buy more organic, pastured meat...but it's going to be very gradual for a while.

The other thing I find with meat is that the really good stuff (free range, organic) is never available in bulk sizing, so I don't get discounts there, either. I've been thinking about buying half a cow, but I really don't know if we have freezer space for that much meat...and it would leave us with nowhere to put chicken, fish or pork...
post #127 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by Delicateflower View Post
I don't eat organic or feed my family organic. It is a very calculated decision.

I amd all about sustainable living, and organic is, to be honest a buzzword that doesn't mean anything about how environmentally sound the growing practices were.

Take herbicides, for example. A single pass with glyphosate to knock down weeds and give your crop a head start in a no-till regime is better than five passes of tilling (especially with a tractor). And yet the high tillage regime that trashes the soil and the local waterways gets the organic label while the no-till does not.

And what is desirable about factory farmed cows being fed organic soybeans to be sold as organic meat and beef, compared to cows living normal lives, supplemented in the winter with (gasp) non-organic feed?

I do agree with all of this, it's really good info, too!
post #128 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by choli View Post
Considering how little fruit is actually in pop tarts, I'd say that is one of the products not work buying organic.
It's not just about the fruit, it's about the wheat and stuff also.

I guess what you're saying is why not go all the way if you're gonna eat junk. But to me I would want to shave out the ick anyway I could, here and there.
post #129 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by PaigeC View Post
I have to admit that I am also shocked by some of the comments in this thread (the one above is just an example I'll talk about in a second, not singling RunnerDuck out). And it isn't just a "crunchier than thou" designer-jeans organic "hype."

If I had to choose between an organic apple shipped from China or a non-organic apple (assuming I don't know the specific farming practices like I might at a farmers market) I would definitely choose the organic! And I respectfully submit, financial considerations aside, that you should too!

Children fed non-organic food show 6 to 9 times as much toxins in their bodies and children fed organic food: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3076638/ increasing their risk of bone and brain cancer, neuroblastoma and childhood leukemia.

The idea that the environmental impact of the long drive of organic produce somehow negates the health benefits is also false. Fossil fuels are used in huge amounts in industrialized farming practices.



source: http://dieoff.org/page69.htm

In response to the pp quoted at the top, the opposite is true. If we don't adopt sustainable (including organic methods) farming we will not be able to feed the world population. This site is good and has some good graphs resources: http://www.theglobaleducationproject...d-and-soil.php

A study from Cornell found that yield of organic crops equalled that of conventional farming with a decreased use of energy and pesticides. source: http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/...other.ssl.html

In addition to the health problems and energy consumption, we have decreased biodiversity (we've went from relying on 80,000 species to 150) and conventional farming degrades the land by removing topsoil
source:http://egj.lib.uidaho.edu/egj09/piment1.htm

We can't afford not to support organic farming (if we can at all afford it - I understand that many people have neither the funds or access to this type of product). I tell my friends that I give to the charity of organic/sustainable farming through my grocery budget instead of giving to x charity directly. Of course local organic is better than shipped from China and many local farms (I'm in Ohio) are not "certified organic" but still have sustainable practices, so my point isn't to trust the organic label explicitly.

To the OP - I think this thread, filled with the wonderful, intelligent MDC mamas answers your question perfectly.

I agree with this post very much, except the organic produce from China. I personally choose to buy local as much as possible and then organic before buying non-organic. There *are* many health benefits to eating organic and I'm actually surprised at MDC that there are still so many people that disagree with this. I totally get not being able to afford organics, we live on a low income for our family size. If you truly can't afford them, then you do the best you can. But to pretend that there isn't a difference between items grown with numerous pesticides and possibly genetically modified and even possibly irradiated... and items that are grown organically? Even if they are mainstream organics? Really? Definitely local organic is best IMO, but I guess most people aren't willing to eat seasonally.

Flame me if you want, but I find it frustrating when people pay for cable, processed food, eating out, extra consumeristic crap and then say "oh I can't afford to buy organic food". If you buy organic processed items, well then yeah the cost would be pretty high. I live in a high cost of living area and frankly we qualify (but do not use them) for food stamps. We eat probably 90% organic and/or local foods because it is a priority to us. Yes, we almost never eat out or buy processed foods because we feel that we cannot afford them financially and physically. We choose to not buy much, we don't have cable, we buy in bulk whenever possible and eat seasonally. Buying organic bulk items is more expensive than buying non-organic bulk items...but in most places it is about the same cost or even cheaper than buying processed stuff.

I guess I just come from a different mindset...I think almost all packaged foods are not a good idea. Even organic ones. Unfortunately we live in a society that spending time to actually cook whole foods seems like a luxury or a waste of time.

This a hot button topic for me, I'll get off my soapbox now
post #130 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by choli View Post
I am getting a kick out of how the organic snobs are being out-crunchied by the locavores and by DelicateFlower's wonderfully mindful posts.
I guess I am an organic snob. To me it's pretty sad that if you buy organic mindfully and talk about organics in a good way you are labeled an elitist or a snob.
I like the idea of local, in fact can't wait for my CSA to start in the next two weeks and the farmers mkt next week......but I will be talking to the farmers about what's organic there, too. I don't just blindly buy whatever they have there and if it tastes great but is not organic I will buy it but talk to the farmers about trying organic.

We do grow our own and our garden is looking great, but if I am at the store I am looking for organic produce AND local produce and the things that haven't traveled very far, our WF labels where things are from.

I don't buy meat unless I know where it is from out of respect for the humane treatment of animals and I like to know what they are being fed as well.


I don't feel snobby about it, I feel great about it, I know I am doing the best things I can for my fam and for animals and for the environment. It's not the easy route and I do shop lots of places and even <GASP> spend more sometimes, but to me it is worth it.




And about the uncrunchiness comment I made earlier.
I feel like defending not caring about what you eat is silly (and yes, some people did say it's just not important to them) and I don't feel bad about feeling that way. If you do care, are consciencious and put thought into what you are doing then I wasn't refferring to you anyway so don't worry about it!
post #131 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by celestialdreamer View Post
Flame me if you want, but I find it frustrating when people pay for cable, processed food, eating out, extra consumeristic crap and then say "oh I can't afford to buy organic food".
I pay for cable (not sure why as we don't use it). If I got rid of the cable, I could use that money to switch maybe three meals a month to organic meat.

In any case, you can find it as frustrating as you want, but there's no requirement that every single person make organic food their number one priority. The "consumeristic crap" that dh and I buy is limited to 2-3 Christmas gifts per child per year, one birthday gift per child per yearand the very occasional purchase of furniture/household items to replace the old, worn out ones we currently own. (I've had some of my furniture since I was a kid, and got it secondhand then.) We eat out about 3X a year. We do buy some processed food, but it's a very small part of our grocery budget (mostly odds and ends - condiments and dressings and such). Boxed mac and cheese is a fraction of the price of making my own, although I mostly don't buy the boxed stuff, anymore.

Where we do spend quite a bit of money is on other things...swimming lessons for dd and ds2, preschool for ds2 next year (I need to get him out of the house a few hours a week, so I can get on track with dd's homeschooling...but he'll be homeschooled the following year), memberships at the Aquarium and Science Center, various activity fees for ds1 (gymnastics fee, entry fee for championships, uniform fees, cleats for Ultimate, choir field trip - $230, etc. etc.), school supplies and school fees for ds1. I'm sorry if it frustrates people that those things are a higher priority for us than eating all organic, but I don't get why anybody else cares. I drive about 250 miles per month, usually. DH commutes by bike (and had to buy a new one unexpectedly a year or so ago, because his got totaled). Some things just cost a lot of money.

For that matter, I'd probably spend a little more than we do on organics, if it were entirely up to me. But, it's not. It's dh's money, too, and we already spend a lot on groceries. There are things that are a high priority for him, too.
post #132 of 183
In the end, everyone just kind of needs to chill out about what everyone else is eating and why. I go back to what I first said: different people have different ideas about what constitues a reasonable diet. As well illustrated by this thread. No one is winning any converts by expounding upon why their way is awesome and that which differs is destroying us all.
post #133 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by sisteeesmama View Post
It's not the easy route and I do shop lots of places and even <GASP> spend more sometimes, but to me it is worth it.
I think the "<GASP>" is part of why people talk about organic snobs, to be honest.

Quote:
I feel like defending not caring about what you eat is silly (and yes, some people did say it's just not important to them) and I don't feel bad about feeling that way.
I don't see how saying something isn't important to you is "defending" not caring about it. If you don't care, you don't care. I know people who are really negative about anyone buying anything organic. Heck - I get ribbed, because I eat dark chocolate (usually Lindt, because I like it best, although I do make a point of buying some free trade, organic, as well), instead of buying Snickers or Mars off the shelf at the cashier. And, I've also been accused of being a snob, because I like dark chocolate and quality dark coffee better than the usual stuff. So, yeah...I'd say those people are defending, or least defensive about, their choices. But, I can't be bothered getting bent. I try to support more ethical choices, with at least some of my grocery dollars...but I can't be bothered to worry about what choices other people are making.
post #134 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by EviesMom View Post
Maybe they were thinking "Man! Only enough Hostess cupcakes for the kids? I waaaaaaant one!" (Or maybe that's just what I would be thinking!)
I'd be that they were Hostess which aren't veggie instead of one of the veggie varieties. (But would get over it quickly because of the nutty brownies!)
post #135 of 183
Why in the world would I give a flying toot what other people feed their kids?? I am far to ego-centric and consumed by the workings of my own life and family to give a tiger's toenail about whether Sally's food is organic or not, or even healthy or not.

Geez, do people really need the little green 'organic' label on their foods to convince themselves they are good mothers?

Guess what? I am a great mother even when my kid is eating <gasp!> <faint> get the smelling salts, boxed mac and cheese. :P

Only a privledged (primarily western) mindset would have enough time to mull over what other families eat.

These "because it is worth it to me!" statements are eye-roll worthy but I will just stop here...lol
post #136 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by sisteeesmama View Post
I like the idea of local, in fact can't wait for my CSA to start in the next two weeks and the farmers mkt next week......but I will be talking to the farmers about what's organic there, too. I don't just blindly buy whatever they have there and if it tastes great but is not organic I will buy it but talk to the farmers about trying organic.
Please do talk to the farmers! As I said above, a great deal of local/farmer's market/CSA-type food is not "certified" organic but grown without the use of chemical pesticides. Getting organic certification is extremely expensive, and many small farms can't afford to do it, despite their growing practices.
post #137 of 183
Quote:
Originally Posted by Just My Opinion View Post
Why in the world would I give a flying toot what other people feed their kids??
Well, non-sustainable agriculture methods do affect all of us - our air quality, our watersheds, soil erosion, the ability of wildlife to survive.
post #138 of 183
I think I'm done with this thread, I probably shouldn't have gotten into it to begin with because I have had tastes of the popular opinion about organic/local/standard before on MDC and it had always turned out the same~
The majority, just like IRL, prefer not to be bothered, don't care, are not convinced, can't afford to do better, think it's snobby/elitist to buy quality food, think local is waaay better than anything else or don't think there is anything wrong with standard foods etc.
Also, I know now that MDC does not mean crunchy and if you happen to be crunchy on MDC it's unrelated to MDC as a whole!

So I won't join these food-related conversations again as they seem to go nowhere, have a great day everyone!
post #139 of 183
I think I should get the uber-crunchy award for trusting my local farmer's word over the word of "the man" (aka the USDA).
post #140 of 183
Yes, and of course the best way to get people to change their habits is to judge, berate, lecture, and look down on them on internet forums


Local is far better for the environment than "organic" (who's standards are both lax and largely unregulated).

Are you seriously telling me the environmental impact of Annie's Cheddar Bunnies is far less than like, goldfish crackers? Maybe insofar as how the actual wheat is grown -- but the packaging/factory emissions/gas to travel/machines to process and package etc is all the same.

Unless organic foods are packaged by kittens and shipped in magical planes that run on love.

We prefer local to "organic".

As far as "crunchy" goes, I don't need validation of my "crunchiness" from anyone .

It is not snobby or elitist to want to eat healthy. We eat extremely healthy. Having the privilege of being able to purchase a $4 head of organic lettuce from 1200 miles away in the middle of winter, (as an example) yes, is extremely elitist. Judging the way others choose to feed their families without truly being in their lives and truly knowing their unique situations, finances and reasoning, yes, is very elitist.
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