The grocery store has so many choices often stamped with a matrix of certifications carrying with it the justification for a higher price. It can be time consuming and burdensome to figure out what to buy from your local grocery store if you don’t have a framework that you use to select products. Below I compiled my priorities when purchasing food.
GMO= Genetically Modified Organism
1) Non GMO +Local + Organic: This is the highest possible assurance of quality you can have without being directly connected to the producers. The product will meet minimum requirements for the “Organic” designation as well as be produced locally and naturally.
2) Non GMO +Local + not organic: Some quality food producers don’t have the resources to pay an independent company to test all their products so as to get the Organic and non GMO designation. They are however local and would not benefit from hurting citizens in their own communities.
3) Non GMO + Organic: Although not a lot of peace of mind comes with this designation alone, it is at least some protection against the use of harmful chemicals in the production of food and would be better than non local and non organic choices.
4) Not Organic or Local: This food is the cheapest and most readily available at a discount. Food production at this level is so humongous and has been scaled at such a level that quality is of little concern. Producers are not local and have no accountability to communities and any established Agribusiness practice is used that will increase the food production. Most of the food is imported from out of the country and is often chemically ripened in transit so as to be market ready after the journey.
5) GMO + Processed: This food is least desirable due to the fact that it is not a naturally occurring product and has undergone some form of processing. Think, chips, crackers, most breads, canned goods, boxed goods etc… Food expires and has a short shelf life. If you can’t pronounce the ingredients it isn’t FOOD.
Importance of being Local and non GMO!
Such a premium is placed on local food production because this gives the consumer the most amount of control over what’s on their table. A local farmer bringing local produce to market has the most to lose if people who eat his chickens die of e.coli poisoning. Their is a mutual accountability in place in this interaction. When this is lost, quality and consumer concern is lost as well. The genetic modification of our food supply is a very dangerous attribute of modern food production which we don’t have enough space to get into. Do your best to avoid GMO products.