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Organic vs. local? Conventional vs. organic?

Every time I go to the grocery store, etc. I wonder, "Since I'm not a millionaire, what should I buy that's organic vs. not?" Also, I'm a big fan of farmer's markets, and Nashville's is pretty cool. Still, my questions led to some interesting web searches.

If you, like me, have ever wondered, what are the foods that are MOST important to steer toward organic on, check out these sites, the first being very informative and featuring a wallet-sized guide to "Top 10 Produce to Buy Organic":

http://www.foodnews.org/
http://www.deliciousorganics.com/Controversies/toptobuyorg.htm
http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1594/is_n5_v8/ai_19926797/print
http://www.thegreenguide.com/doc/54-55/organic

I read about the first web site in an interesting environment/cook book, http://www.eatgrub.org/book.cfm, which Erin found at the library (score!). "Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen," is interesting because it compiles all the usual bad-booky (pesticides, fair-trade/labor issues, etc.) but it's overall, quite an optimistic book and a great, all-in-one resource if you're wanting to know more about organics, farmer's markets, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), etc. In fact, it's got me excited enough to inquire about joining a CSA and perhaps volunteering with a community garden. I'm all food, growing it, cooking it, eating it, talking about it, studying it, it's all good.

Finally, here's an interesting article I found regarding organic vs. local foods, the two not always being the same. The writer notes that Google's cafe at it's Silicon Valley headquarters is able to supply almost all-local food, while its Dublin office imports almost all of its food. I suspect most of the world outside California and temperate havens would face similar challenges as Dublin, but still, local food is an interesting idea for lots of reasons, namely all the energy (read: oil) that goes into trucking a head of lettuce from California to the East Coast; can't we get creative with veggies and make winter salads out of collards, etc.? : )

http://www.time.com/time/printout/0,8816,1595245,00.html

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