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Old 12-11-2009, 12:58 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sierraAZ View Post
I don't know about this one... Every potato I've ever bought does sprout. I know because I don't cook much and potatoes tend to linger in my house.
It may be the variety. I do know that in the past they have created some varieties that won't sprout for a long time, but eventually will. I'm wondering if it is the Russet potato. You can't find them here in Sweden, and I don't believe I've seen any Russets anywhere else in Europe.

One thing I do remember about having my own garden and growing potatoes is that they always had a deep rich earthy flavour. I've never used chemical fertilizers , nor have I used chemical pesticides. My background is involved with micro-biology, especially within forest applications. A long time ago I noticed and observed that when scouting around in any healthy forest environment that no matter what type of vegetation was growing in that particular ecosystem, the health and vigor of everything surpassed most things within any city garden environs. Rarely did you ever notice much in the way of pests attacking these plants. So I wondered why ???

One thing is clear, no one is out there in these wildlands mass sprinkling any type of MiracleGrow to keep the system growing and functioning, so you have to wonder how does the system work and how can it be replicated into an urban or agricultural setting ??? All plant environs in the wild are successfully run with symbiotic Mycorrhizal (fungus) grid networks and beneficial bacteria which attach themselves to the roots systems of all these plants. Many and most have the ability to not only breakdown dead organic mater and give it back to the plant, but they also can mine the inorganic parts of the soil and extract trace elements not readily available to plants otherwise. As an illustration, our digestive system has billions upon billions of E.coli bacteria to help us process our foods. Without them we'd starve and probably would'nt have gotten off to a good start in the first place. Plants are the same. Nutritionally they would starve in the wild without these things.

So when I planted my potatoes, I'd first prepare the soil with alot of healthy natural ammendment. Most vegetables come from plants adapted to areas of nature, like a valley foor or flood plain where nutrients are deposited in rich layers. One of the things I used besides some beneficial aged manure from the barnyard was Oak mulch collected from under numerous scrub oaks found in the countryside around my property. The mulch and some of the surface soil mixed with aged broken down organic matter was rich in beneficial organisms. But I also innoculated the soil with beneficial bacteria powdered media which can be purchased from several companies now days. The results were potatoes that were almost rock hard (was great for storage value) and specifically a flavour of a strong earthy taste that I really never had with store bought potatoes. The other benefit was that I never ever had to spray for pest and if there were any, I could simply hand pick them off. Mostly a plants immune system is alot like ours. Create healthy conditions for growing and living goes a long way in prevention of infestation or even negative pathogen attacks. They were always simply absent from my garden.

It's really not just potatoes, but also other root crops which can obsorb and store many of the negative things modern agriculture uses in their industrial farming practices. I remember years ago being at a Carrot Packing Shed up near Bakersfield. The forman stopped the conveyer system and yelled out, "Bring out the Organics". I asked someone what he meant and they said they were switching the regular packaging material for Organic Carrot bags. The produce was the same, just different packaging. I had a friend who ran a Fruit Market in Southern California. He had certain clients who'd order specifically organically grown produce. They were apparently vegans ( really in the religious sense ) and in this one instance purchased some of these organic labled carrots , but with the regular industrially farmed carrots. They actually got almost deathly ill from it because their systems was so sensitive and it was other incidents like this where laws became stricter as far as certification of being "Organic". The point is, most all root crops will store all these industrial farming chemicals, be they chem-fertilizers or pesticides.

On an interesting note: If you use beneficial organisms to colonize the root systems of your garden or landscape and you also use chemcial fertilizers as instructed by the manufacturer, the organisms will detact from the plant's roots and die off. Something about the richness of those products the organisms don't like. I suppose if you had to use them, then extremely watering them down as far as dilution would be necessary. Plant crops without these beneficial organisms do need those consentrated chemical applications because they'd not succeed otherwise. Unfortunately not all the chemical food nutrients are obsorbed into the plants system and most of it is lost through the soil and into the water table below. This is the reason the dilution rate needs to be stronger than necessary, in the hopes that some of the chem food reaches and touches the plants root system. So it's a sort of numbers game. Decades of doing this has caused leaching of these chemicals into underground water table/aquafirs and above ground aquatic ecosystems and that's why you all see most waterways anywhere having that peasoup colour, This is because those chemicals act as MiracleGrow for all sorts of Algae which uses up more oxygen in the water and effects the health of other organisms. It's a sort of Domino effect.
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Old 12-11-2009, 01:23 AM
 
2,255 posts, read 4,796,073 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonlady View Post
I read that article last week and I had already eliminated everything except the canned tomatoes and the non-organic potatoes. We only eat potatoes maybe once a week, so I can splurge on the organic, but I don't know how to eliminate canned tomatoes!

For those who love microwave popcorn, look in the snack aisle for popcorn in a bag - that's what I've gone to eating.
I thought the articles comment on the canned Tomatoes was interesting. It mentioned a chemical ("bisphenol-A") which has been actually detrimental to our environment for decades now. It's effects are the major cause of numerous lifeforms, especially aquatic creatures, to become extinct in many areas because of inability to reproduce themselves. Why ??? The reason is that these chemicals like "bisphenol-A" among many chemicals have the ability to mask as a specific hormone, either estrogen or testosterone. Interestingly, it only takes extremely diluted amount consentrations of these chemicals to result in the endocrinal disruption and development of an animals sex early in fetal development stages. Basically it is causing homosexual behavior in numerous lifeforms and this is why they are not able to reproduce in the wilds. These minute chemical dilutions disrupt fetal development and destroy the genetics of the organism and it's future adult ability to propagate.

In June 2009 of this year there was an article in some science journals almost celebrating how natural homosexual behavior was because it is found in nature everywhere. The hideous thing is that it is NOT natural to nature because it causes extinction and has'nt been observed before until Scientists invented this so-called "Green Revolution" through the wonders of chemicals. Here's a link to studies done in the 1980s by researchers who warned of the detrimental effects of all these chemicals invented by scientists for their industrial big-business employers. So rather than this effect being natural to nature, it's true cause is nothing more than stupid human ignorance, greed and selfishness. You should also understand that these same researchers are finding the same effects on human beings as well as in nature. Of course it then becomes a political hot potato to even discuss it at that point.

This isn't meant to be anything political (nature does'nt give a rat's rear end about anyone's politics) , but the site here does reveal what's been going wrong in our world for decades. If you were to actually read all these scientific peer-reviewed studies and reports and meditate on their contents, it would take about a month or more, but here it is.

"Our Stolen Future"
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Old 12-11-2009, 04:06 AM
 
Location: Somewhere out there...
3,653 posts, read 7,263,820 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sierraAZ View Post
I don't know about this one... Every potato I've ever bought does sprout. I know because I don't cook much and potatoes tend to linger in my house.

On the other hand, I had something happening some years ago I'd never seen. I'd forgotten a couple of eggplants in the pantry. Finally I figured the horrible smell coming from the pantry was caused by them. Ever since I remember eggplants were getting dry when left for a long time. Those guys had turned into stinky LIQUID! I'm not sure I want to eat eggplants anymore even though I like them...
I know what you mean about the potatoes I buy them with every intention of using them, but I forget about them and within a week or so they are growing buds all over. I'm not sure I believe the potato story.
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Old 12-11-2009, 04:15 AM
 
Location: Texas
14,078 posts, read 17,030,960 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bellalunatic View Post
Oh, so since we're not newborns we're a lost cause?! Good golly that's a depressing viewpoint.
But the point is also to not buy items that are bad for you and toxic to our environment helps to curb undesireable business practices. Haven't you noticed the explosion of organic farming over the past couple of decades?

Agribusiness will hopefully cater to what the consumers want and not the other way around. We should dictate the market, and we can, buy local, buy fresh, buy organic, get to know your suppliers etc..
Purchasing healthier choices of food items can help to protect future generations and our environment as well.
it's not just about one's own health, at least not in my mind, and I'm sure I'm not alone.

Of course we're a lost cause from the day we're born. Ever know of someone who didn't die?

As for oganic? Yes, I've noticed the rise in products LABELED as organic (and typically for a much higher price), but that doesn't tell you much. There are no uniform standards for such labeling. It may not be what you consider organic, so just be aware that what you're purchasing may not be what you think you're purchasing.

And, if you buy locally produced produce, just remember that you're still likely buying Frankenfood's grown from genetically altered seeds. If the seed is tainted, so is the produce no matter where it's grown.

Grass fed beef: Sounds like a wonderful idea, but have you spent much time around hayfields or ranches and farms who allow their cows to free range? It's not uncommon to see them out there spreading fertilizer on the grass, so you're not avoiding chemical residue anyhow, even when you pay more for the "grass fed" label. They also plant the kind of grass they want the cow to eat (also from genetically altered seeds) and spray herbicides to keep out the grasses they don't want the cows to eat.

Oh, and did you notice the "expert" that article quoted on the subject of grass-fed beef? Joel Salatin, co-owner of Polyface Farms. Not surprisingly, Polyface Farms is, by their own definition, "beyond organic." Check out their website: Polyface, Inc. Hmmmm. Does the fact that Joe is in the grass fed beef business have any bearing on his trash talking of other producers? You decide.

One more thing: I spent more than 30 years as a long distance truck driver and have loaded potatoes at just about every farm in the San Luis Valley of Colorado, and a good many more in Idaho, California and Washington. Hundreds of loads of potatoes loaded right at the farm. Guess what? I can't recall EVER seeing a patch of private potatoes growing over there by the farmers house. I HAVE seen the farmer or his wife come out to the storage bin and carry a bucket or basket of potatoes back to the house.

But, if you're really concerned about such things, may I suggest you avoid Lay's brand potato chips altogether? Lay's develops their own seeds in their own genetic laboratories and ships them under guard to their producers. They dictate what chemicals can, or cannot, be used on their spuds. Those genetically modified seeds are only good for about 4 or 5 generations, then they become so unstable that a new batch has to be produced. They begin to rot very, very quickly, so much so that it's difficult to deliver that last generation from Colorado to Dallas before they turn to mush and that's only 800 miles.

You're fooling yourself if you think you can avoid all this stuff. Worse, you're being conned into paying more for just about the same thing.
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Old 12-11-2009, 08:08 AM
 
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I find this list helpful when trying to prioritize what I should and should not bother to buy organic when it comes to fruit and vegetables.

http://www.organic.org/articles/showarticle/article-214: (broken link)
Quote:
12 Most Contaminated

■Peaches
■Apples
■Sweet Bell Peppers
■Celery
■Nectarines
■Strawberries
■Cherries
■Pears
■Grapes (Imported)
■Spinach
■Lettuce
■Potatoes

12 Least Contaminated

■Onions
■Avocado
■Sweet Corn (Frozen)
■Pineapples
■Mango
■Asparagus
■Sweet Peas (Frozen)
■Kiwi Fruit
■Bananas
■Cabbage
■Broccoli
■Papaya
As far as meat, getting together with others and buying in bulk can help save a ton of money either through co-ops or by buying a whole cow and splitting it. For me personally, meat, dairy and eggs are the items that I'm willing to pay the most for but we just eat them in smaller quantities. For example when we eat chicken we usually split one breast between three people. It's enough to satisfy and it forces us to eat more veggies instead. I am very frugal but quality food is one of the few things that I'm willing to spend a little more for.
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Old 12-11-2009, 12:12 PM
 
2,255 posts, read 4,796,073 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yodi View Post
I find this list helpful when trying to prioritize what I should and should not bother to buy organic when it comes to fruit and vegetables.

http://www.organic.org/articles/showarticle/article-214: (broken link)


As far as meat, getting together with others and buying in bulk can help save a ton of money either through co-ops or by buying a whole cow and splitting it. For me personally, meat, dairy and eggs are the items that I'm willing to pay the most for but we just eat them in smaller quantities. For example when we eat chicken we usually split one breast between three people. It's enough to satisfy and it forces us to eat more veggies instead. I am very frugal but quality food is one of the few things that I'm willing to spend a little more for.
Actually all those 24 years I lived up in the San Jacinto mountains above Palm springs, we belonged to a western states co-op company where you could create your own co-op within their company called
Mountain Peoples Warehouse, which has since been changed to United Natural Foods Inc

United Natural Foods - Home (http://www.unfi.com/UNFI_Family.aspx?ekmensel=d6ba9a56_34_195_btnlink - broken link)


Anyone know if they still have the co-op service ??? Okay, maybe they do but just in a different sort of way. We use to meet the semi truck once a month at the either HWY junction 371 & 74 near Anza or 243 & 74 near Idyllwild, CA. But here's their starting link.

United Natural Foods - Home (http://www.unfi.com/GettingStarted.aspx - broken link)

They still seem to have the old name but under organic beer & wine distribution.
Mountain Peoples Organic Wine & Beer Distribution (http://www.mpwwine.com/aboutus.html - broken link)

The point is these folks always had pretty good stuff, even organically raised, beef, turkeys chicken, etc and it was indeed good tasting produce. As the drivers traveled their routes, they also picked up from organic farms and other manufacturers of organic related products.

They have absolutely nothing like that over here where I reside in Sweden. I really miss those options.
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Old 12-11-2009, 12:25 PM
 
2,255 posts, read 4,796,073 times
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Originally Posted by stillkit View Post
You're fooling yourself if you think you can avoid all this stuff. Worse, you're being conned into paying more for just about the same thing.
Actually the best way to assure you're getting the best and healthiest organically grown and raised foods is to raise them yourself. Unfortunately I doubt most Americans have the time, patience and lifestyle for doing that anymore.

I used the same process I described above for growing potatoes for all my vegetable garden and fruit orchard.

How many here have ever heard of IceBerg head lettuce that has a deep rich green colour throughout the head ??? Most of the heads in the stores are light/pale green and white inside. Now how many here have had this same lettuce and it tasted like green spinach ??? I have.
Apparently the beneficial bacteria I had innoculted each plant with brought more than enough rich nutrients to the plant. They were definitely was rich in iron. Most store bought iceberg lettuce has pretty much a lifeless taste and used only as a textural additive to salads.

It's sad when you consider what the majority of mankind are really missing out on as far as flavours.
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Old 12-11-2009, 12:55 PM
 
Location: Syracuse IS Central New York.
8,516 posts, read 3,813,001 times
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Hmmm..I've seen this article before. Unfortunately, the food recommendations are far too expensive for most of us in these trying economic times.

Despite the costs, there are some small steps that you can take to eat healthier foods. Two relatively simple ways are to buy as much as you can directly from a local farmer. It might not be completely "organic", but on the other hand it won't be from those large factory farms. Another idea along those lines is to visit local Farmers Markets on a regular basis. Again, you will find a wide selection of locally produced products.

A second idea is to buy the least processed food as possible. Yes, that means you will have to cook. Not only is it healthier for you can reduce salt, sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and other additives. It is also cheaper to cook for yourself than to buy prepared foods.
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Old 12-11-2009, 12:58 PM
 
Location: Neither here nor there
14,810 posts, read 13,562,403 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonlady View Post
but I don't know how to eliminate canned tomatoes!
If you have even a small garden space you would be surprised how many tomatoes you could get in one growing season. You could then can your own in Mason jars. Tomatoes are the easiest vegetable to home can as they do not require a pressure canner--just a water bath canner. You just need to add some citric acid to each jar to be sure the pH is low enough to prevent the botulism bacteria from growing in them once they are canned. And choose meaty varieties, such as Amish Paste or Roma to get the most "meat" and the least juice.

Or try and find locally grown paste tomatoes in your area and home can those, if you don't want to grow your own.

There's lots of info on the internet about home canning.
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Old 12-11-2009, 07:45 PM
 
Location: Texas
14,078 posts, read 17,030,960 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluepacific View Post
Actually the best way to assure you're getting the best and healthiest organically grown and raised foods is to raise them yourself. Unfortunately I doubt most Americans have the time, patience and lifestyle for doing that anymore.

But...you have to get your seeds from somewhere.

Read up on the process of mutagenesis.
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