Going to the grocery store can be overwhelming. There are new items on the shelves every single day. How do you know which to purchase and which to stay away from? Today, I'm thinking I'll stick to a very basic question many people ask me...organic or non-organic?
According to the USDA, organic meat, poultry, eggs, fruit, vegetables and dairy products come from animals that are given no antibiotics or growth hormones and are produced without using most conventional pesticides; fertilizers made with synthetic ingredients or sewage sludge; or ionizing radiation. Organic standards do not address food quality.
Another major grip of consumers...the high cost of organic food. It is a valid argument, however there are reasons for the higher price tag. Organic farming practices cost more than conventional farming methods. Plus, government regulations required for organic certification, including certification costs, labor hours and shipping prices, add to high costs.
There is no research stating that organic food is a healthier choice. That being said, there are certain foods that when farmed with conventional techniques tend to have higher pesticide levels. Check out this list for the best and worst of non-organic foods. Purchasing the "worst" foods as organic can help to reduce your pesticide intake.
My take? If your wallet can handle it, buy organic produce on the "worst" list. There is something to be said about choosing organic meat, poultry and dairy as well. It's my first choice--but again, it's pricey. I also buy mostly organic baby food for my daughter. My theory is it can't be healthy to give lots of additives to a developing baby. Again, my personal choice. Other than that--organic packaged food can be a waste of money. But, if you like it? Go for it. It really is a personal preference.