Kara Ghiringhelli, Department of Public Health
Kara is a Nutrition Education Specialist at DPH.
If you are a buyer of organic foods, especially fruits and vegetables, do you care what city, state or even country your organic foods come from?
I guess I never really thought about organic foods coming from other countries. Maybe it is ignorant to assume that when I purchase organic broccoli with the USDA seal on it, I naturally think it came from a farm in the United States. But it has come to my attention that organic foods sold on the market with the USDA Organic seal can come from other countries, most notably China.
I’m not sure how I feel about this. I tend gravitate to locally grown organic produce for a number of reasons. First of all, it supports my local farmers and the local economy. Second, I enjoy purchasing fruits and vegetables from the Farmer’s Market—each time I go, there is something new that is in season. Third, it is the most environmentally-friendly choice, in part because it isn’t imported from other regions of the U.S. or from another country. And fourth, it is typically the ‘freshest’ because it didn’t take time to travel very far from the farm to my market.
So I guess it does matter to me. Now that I know this, I will look a bit more closely to the labels of the organic and even non-organic produce that I buy to see where they come from. But this is a decision I’ve made for me and my family. Does it matter to you where your organic foods come from? We’d love to hear from you.