Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Grow it and eat it.

beet-dyed deviled eggs were served at the event

A few weeks ago, Sally and I attended an evening event centered around food and health. The event was part of a week long film festival hosted by the U of M's School of Public Health. One of the films we watched was called Food Fight. The film highlights how food and eating are political and pleasurable acts. It discussed how what we chose to eat helps to perpetuate the movement for local, seasonal, organic and sustainably grown foods. I won't give too much of the movie away because I highly recommend that you watch it and see for yourself. It is available on Netflix.

One of the facets of eating that the movie promotes is that of growing your own food wherever you live, be it urban or otherwise. Of course, this subject matter totally hit the spot for me, as I am anticipating my own garden. Since it was still too early to start planting my garden, instead I pulled out the seeds that I dried from a pumpkin that I got in the fall from the freezer. I tested to see if they were viable by putting them in a wet paper towel inside of a baggie and hanging it in my window for a week. They sprouted! Since then, I put them in some soil and have made plans to create a little pumpkin patch in my garden.

This issues of food sources, growing practices and quality are becoming nearer and dearer to me the more and more I learn about them. Previously Paul and I primarily shopped at the big box grocery stores while regularly making supplemental trips to the co-op. We recently made the switch and joined the Seward Co-op. For the past 2 months we have primarily shopped there with the rare item or two purchased from the conventional grocery stores.

Before we switched, we discussed the possible implications this decision would have on our food budget. As I predicted, on an item to item basis, there are some things that are cheaper at the co-op (think bulk food) and others that are cheaper at the conventional grocery store (canned beans, pasta). As a result of the switch, I've found that we buy less packaged foods, we plan our shopping trips better, we waste less food and we eat healthier foods that taste better. Add to that all of the other great elements of shopping at a co-op (supporting the local economy, buying organic, less packaging waste, more pleasant shopping environment...) and I am so happy to have made the switch. And, as it turns out, we spend about the same amount on groceries as before.


  1. Hey did you see Ann's post on beet pickled eggs? http://chroniclesofmsannthrope.blogspot.com/2010/04/my-kind-of-easter-eggs.html

    I'm looking forward to making some with fresh beets.

    Can't wait for planting time!

  2. Look at those cute pumpkin plants! I am impressed with your food budgeting. As you know, we joined the co-op too, but are still making the transition to shopping there the majority of the time. We will get a rhythm going.

  3. Beth - I did see that post. She posted that a day or two after this event. It was strange to have never seen that before and then to see it twice in one week!


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