Organic Co-op and The Best Organic Buys

This week I tried a new co-op, Lily’s Produce, that a friend referred me to. I picked up my box last night and this is what I got for $34.50:

  • 4 Oranges
  • 2 nectarines
  • 2 pears
  • 1 lb grapes
  • 1 cantaloupe
  • 2 lbs bananas
  • 1.5 lbs sweet potatoes
  • 1 head red leaf lettuce
  • 1 lb radishes
  • 1 lb squash
  • 1 cucumber
  • 4 roma tomatoes
  • 1 onion
  • 12 oz broccoli

The box itself was $30 and then I ordered 1 lb carrots and extra lb each of tomatoes and squash ($4.50 for all the a la carte items)

All items are organic, and she also has beef, chicken, turkey, and hot dogs. There are also some frozen veggies, nut butters, cheese, and other organic items.

As of next week, the pick-up for South Brevard spots is on Thursdays. There are a number of places that are suitable for most everyone. I was very pleased with all the items I received, and I was especially excited to be able to have so many choices!

So what are the best choices to make when buying organic? Here are some tips:

The  Dirty Dozen – These fruits and veggies are the ones to buy organically because of their ability to absorb pesticides.

  • Apples
  • Celery
  • Strawberries
  • Peaches
  • Spinach
  • Imported Nectarines
  • Imported Grapes
  • Sweet Bell Peppers
  • Potatoes
  • Cherries
  • Lettuce Kale/Collards
  • Pears

Milk – Organic milk is higher in the heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and conjugated linoleic acid- another heart-healthy component that also helps fight weight gain.

Beef– Organic, grass-fed beef is lower in saturated fat and has more omega-3 fatty acids, more vitamin E, and carotenoids.

Chicken and Pork – While organic chicken and pork are fed an organic diet and have access to outdoors, government regulations prevent ALL farmers from giving poultry and pork growth hormones, so packages labeled ‘Hormone-free’ are misleading because both meats required to be so. I would choose to buy the organic beef over the organic chicken or pork.

Organic/All-natural/Hormone-free/Rang-free – Here is the Mayo Clinic’s explanation of these terms:

“Natural” and “organic” are not interchangeable terms. You may see “natural” and other terms such as “all natural,” “free-range” or “hormone-free” on food labels. These descriptions must be truthful, but don’t confuse them with the term “organic.” Only foods that are grown and processed according to USDA organic standards can be labeled organic.

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1 Comment

  1. Krista

     /  September 29, 2011

    this post was helpful. Thank you.
    ( :


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