Aimee Speaker Essay 5 11/11/08 The Evil Ways of Traditionally Grown Fruit This situation is something that I face every time I go to the grocery store. I love apples, and they have been a must-have in my cart since the day I began shopping for myself. Being the poor college student that I am, I have always chosen the conventionally grown apple. Without doing any research, it seems like the obvious choice. It looks riper, larger and costs less. I generally pick up the bag of conventional apples and turn my back on the organic produce, quickly forgetting that I had even considered it. Upon doing some research for this essay, I may just change my mind the next time I face this dilemma. The benefits of buying conventional produce appear to be due to methods of trickery rather than actual quality. The first way that conventional apple producers fool customers is with the more appealing look of their apples. They often have coloration that makes them appear riper than organic apples. In truth, this coloring may be artificial, designed to give the impression of a fresh and very ripe apple. It may not be as ripe as the organic apple, and it also probably contains more preservatives to give it a longer shelf life. In contrast, organic apples contain no artificial coloring or preservatives. These are probably the fresher and riper fruit on the shelf. Also, conventional apples are almost always larger in size than organic apples. This is actual ly due to swelling from higher water content. Despite appearances, the amount of food matter you get in a conventional apple is no more than you would get if you bought an organic one. In addition to this, studies have shown that the food matter that the organic apple contains is higher in nutrient levels than that of the conventionally grown apple. The additives and preservatives designed to increase the shelf life of those apples decrease the nutrient levels in the product. Organic apples are proven to contain higher levels of vitamins and antioxidants than their chemical showered relatives. Accordingly, studies have shown that organic apples taste better than regular apples as well. Organic apples, in addition to containing no additives, also do not contain artificial pesticide residues. There is conflicting data on the health effects of pesticide consumption. The levels are low in our produce, but even those levels have potentially dangerous and yet unknown health repercussions. On a larger scale, organic farms appear to be better for the environment than traditional farms. Because they don ' t spray pesticides all over their produce, they also are not releasing these chemicals into the environment. They also are more energy efficient and don ' t produce as much waste due to chemical packaging. The only benefit that I can still see to buying traditionally grown apples is the cost. The apples in this hypothetical situation are 19 cents more per pound. The number may seem like a lot, but considering the benefits for myself and the environment, it doesn ' t seem unreasonable to just suck it up and pay it. Since I ' m on a diet anyways (also hypothetically), I could just buy one less container of Ben & Jerry ' s to balance out the budget. Problem solved. http://www.grinningplanet.com/2005/12-27/health-benefits-of-organic-food-article.htm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organic_food
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