So, where are the benefits from the time and labor spent to reap the golden harvest ?
A Voice From The Past…
There was a particular period in American history when families planted patriotic gardens during world war II, mainly to save money so the government could concentrate its efforts on supplying the needs of our troops. The garden served a dual purpose, of course. It also supplied the family with a ready and much needed nutritional base for all involved in the common effort. When the war ended, the tradition was usually continued in order to keep a good thing going. It did save money, but the value of the labor involved could not be considered and only the love of growing and harvesting could be considered, though its nutritional value was the real benefit. Today, many homeowners still grow small gardens and some urban apartment dwellers share in community gardens, in many cases through the support of local charity groups.
So, Where’s The Real Problem ?
With the many changes in both the global and domestic food chain supplier processing and delivery safety precautions, the consumer is not receiving the same original fruit or vegetables from the harvest as we did a few decades ago. Even though pesticides, herbicides and artificial fertilizers are still in use, we have now added one other major factor to our food delivery system, i.e., irradiation of a good portion of our food supplies, which includes vegetables, fruits and our meat production for the consumer. It is not bad enough that food grown in our soils are not as healthy as they once were, because of the use of artificial fertilizers and pesticides needed to control pests, which also add a level of toxicity to human ingestion, along with some mineral depletion, but now we have added irradiation of this same produce to the process. Irradiation is supposed to help eradicate bacterial growth during handling, mainly in the meat processing industry. It was also put in place to lessen law suit probability against meat processors from consumers sickened by salmonella, etc..
Now, The Consumer Can Take Control
The only way the consumer can get out from under this umbrella is to control his own process from seedling to harvest…no shipping, no chemical fertilizers, sprays and no irradiation involved. Irradiation also destroys much of the enzymes in foods along with many of the vitamins and minerals, similar to the canning process. The result is a much more nutritious harvest than can be purchased anywhere and even better than specialty organic food suppliers, assuming you use an organic growing method, which means using all your lawn clippings, yard leaves and anything in organic refuse, including building a small compost bin in your back yard to discard your table scraps and supplying the bin with cultured earthworms. You can then become independent of what the government lets the industry do.