Saturday, January 26, 2008

Frozen Strawberries

We went to Trader Joe's yesterday after Homeschooling Open Gym. I did some shopping and decided to get some organic frozen strawberries. I got them because it's important to me that my kids have berries in their fruit smoothies and I know that strawberries are one of a long list of dirty fruits/veggies that always have a really high residue of pesticides. Getting organic especially makes sense for strawberries.

Are there organic growers--people who don't dump chemicals on their crops here in the United States? The very same farmers that I get the raw milk from (and really I OWN part of their farm as it's a farm share--I get the bacon, baby) sometimes sell strawberries in June, but they're in Michigan not here in Very-Republican-Town, Illinois. It's January and it's really cold these days.

Maybe I could get some strawberries from California. Would they be like $5.99 a half pint? (Remind me to tell you about the time I bought a bunch of organic cherries for about $9 and they got buried in the fridge...my husband didn't really dig that, I gotta say...) I can't really justify expensive food purchases around here. I can get healthy foods for us, but I can't be completely decadent and frivolous and irreverent about cherries. I digress.

So, I stand in the aisle and read the frozen organic strawberry package, and remember that these strawberries come all the way from Turkey! Turkey.


But, these juicy organic strawberries are flash frozen at the peak of ripeness...



Here's a closer look. See?


So is the carbon footprint that these strawberries make by their ocean-crossing, fuel-burning voyage offset by the fact that they're organic? And, on a tangential and similar note, is the Australian wine I got significantly better than the stuff we could get from California? Do I have to be a sucker for a hopping kangaroo on a colorful label on a bottle of wine? Am I like one of those birds that eats everything shiny she finds on the beach? Ooooh, shiny!!!!

Maybe we need to be thinking about buying local as well as not buying anything new for a year.

I think my kids deserve for me to feed them as well as I can. The more you know, the more you know; I may have to keep on giving them frozen strawberries from Turkey after all. I know that they're organic and I know that my kids shouldn't have to eat synthetic chemicals where it is so easy to avoid them.

That's where he had me--the strawberries.

6 comments:

Blessed Wife and Mother said...

You make me LOL with your labeling and pictures! I love it! I am the same way often! I wonder what hubby things when youa re sitting there drawing on bags and taking photos!
Anyway, let me know if you for some bizarre reason dont get that check by Tuesday. I say this because well...we live out in the country and Im completely paranoid of our mail service!
We love our Kefir...my daughter likes it as a shake. I personally...ick. But I did mix some with some Raw Organic Honey and used it as a dip with my fruit. LOVED IT! I felt like I was getting away with something! LOL!

Anonymous said...

Another option if you've got the space/inclination is to grw your own strawberries (and other veggies) @ home via a grow light. That way you know exactly how much of a carbon footprint there is, and you're guaranteed to know exactly what goes into the strawberries. Downside of course is a higher electricity bill, but it's a great way to teach the kids about being self sufficient, and you'll *never* taste better fruit/veg (after the first two crops while you figure out the right feeding schedule.)

If you do decide to grow at home, I highly suggest using a compost/soil mix, and not trying to do hydroponics, it's much more complex, and a lot harder to do organically.

Laura said...

I have 6 strawberry plants growing heartily right now out in the yard that I got from my friend M. They're next to the row of raspberry plants, also growing heartily!

Maybe by next year, I'll have some fruit to speak of. This season I think they're just trying to get themselves established.

I don't have the inclination to grow anything indoors...other than my slightly unhappy house plants.

If I did have space/inclination, I think I would grow things year round inside as you suggest. Lettuce, berries, peppers--it would be wonderful, wouldn't it?

Anonymous said...

I would like to introduce you to a domestic organic farming company that has and will be offering more domestically grown organic frozen fruits and vegetables - Natural Choice Foods Inc. In 2009 we will have frozen strawberries grown and packed in California.

Right now we have frozen organic fruit bars and sorbets. Check them out ncf-inc.com

Anonymous said...

My partner bought these same strawberries from Acme the other day, here in February of 2016. (Perhaps Trader Joe's no longer carries them; we shop there and have not seen the brand in that store lately.) I myself would not have bought these strawberries because of the concerns you raise in your article, but we ended up with them, so I started to use them. A ROTTEN strawberry was among those in the first bag I opened. Nothing at our end compromised the strawberries for a moment, and the sell-by date was late in 2017. I'm struck by the fact that you were noting concerns about the same brand (though you didn't advance so far as to discover a rotten strawberry) all the way back in 2008!

Anonymous said...

PS. When I refer to these at "the same" strawberries, I mean that they are from turkey and feature the same image on the bag. Obviously, the pervious brand existed under the Trader Joe's aegis. For me the takeaway is: add "rotten strawberry" to the other, already good reason not to buy frozen strawberries from Turkey, from any store in the US.

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