Eat Well by dfgh4bnmu



        TOPIC 5
                             These Guiding Principles Will Help You Eat Well
        Well                 Reduce Your Meat Consumption                Buy Local
                             Eat less meat, and when you do choose       Buy local produce that is harvested ripe
     Eat Locally - 112       meat pick a more sustainable option.        and in season. It tastes better when it’s
Eat with the Seasons - 118   Meat production is land, water, and         fresh and you’re supporting local farm-
 Beverage Choices - 120      energy intensive—plus, the average          ers. A typical meal in the U.S. contains
 Meat and Seafood - 122
                             American consumes twice the recom-          ingredients from at least five other
 Wholesome Foods - 124
                             mended daily allowance of protein.1         countries.2
Organic and Beyond - 126
                             Choose Whole, Unprocessed Foods             Grow Your Own
                             Buy fresh instead of canned, frozen, or     Garden at home or at a community gar-
                             boxed. Less processing is better for your   den for food as fresh, local, and afford-
                             health and the environment.                 able as it gets!

108 Eat Well                                                                    More resources at
Buy Organic and Sustainable                 grown or raised here in Wisconsin, or             Energy Usage in the
                                            halfway around the world?                          U.S. Food System
Choose food produced without pesti-
cides, synthetic fertilizers, growth hor-     Food represents one of our most tan-
mones, or genetically modified organ-        gible links to the land, giving us the
isms. This is a healthy choice for you,     opportunity to connect with nature and                            20%
the farmers, the cows, and the farmland.    have a positive impact on the environ-                            Production
                                            ment at least three times a day. Taking
Drink on Tap                                some simple steps such as choosing local       80%
Whether it’s water or a local beer, drink   and/or organic produce and eating less         Transportation
                                            meat can have significant impacts on the        Processing
from the tap. You’ll be reducing the
                                            environment. For example, the food we            Packaging
environmental impacts of packaging and
                                            eat typically travels 1,500 miles to reach          Preparation
transportation significantly. One-quarter
of bottled water is just tap water in a     us.4 Choosing tomatoes produced in Wis-
bottle.3                                    consin will decrease air pollution and use
                                                                                         When you choose local food
                                            less fuel for transportation compared to
                                                                                         you’re reducing greenhouses
Why Should We Eat Well?                     a California tomato. You’ll be supporting    gasses and usually enjoying a
How much do you think about the food        Wisconsin farms and the local economy,       tastier product too.
on your breakfast table in the morning?     and helping to keep our agricultural land
                                            in production—maintaining green space        Source: Heller, Martin C., and
What do you know about the chickens                                                      Gregory A. Keoleian. Life Cycle-Based
that laid your eggs, the grain that was     in an urbanizing area. If the Wisconsin      Sustainability Indicators for Assessment
processed to produce your cereal, or the    farmer uses organic practices, your          of the U.S. Food System. Ann Arbor,
                                            decision to buy his tomatoes will have       MI: Center for Sustainable Systems,
cows that provided your milk? Were they                                                  University of Michigan, 2000: 42.
                                            additional environmental and human

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                            Eat Well 109
Community Supported                                  health benefits. If you purchase the                at the peak of ripeness. You get high
Agriculture (CSA)                                    tomatoes at a local farmers market, you’ll         nutritional value and fresh taste, both
                                                     also cultivate relationships with pro-             of which deteriorate over time. Evidence
                                                     ducers and the money you spend goes                continues to show that organic produce
                                                     directly to the farmer.                            is also healthier for you.
                                                                                                           Another important step to smart food
                                                     about what’s in season. If it’s November,          choices is to select whole (unprocessed)
                                                     choose Wisconsin grown squash instead              foods as much as you can. Whole foods
                                                     of tomatoes; in May choose fresh local             do not contain added ingredients, such
                                                     greens instead of sweet corn. Every time           as refined sugars or partially hydroge-
                                      J. Kinzelman   you choose seasonal Wisconsin pro-                 nated oils, that decrease nutritional
                                                     duce you’ll have a positive impact on              content and may contribute to health
                                                     the environment and your local                            problems. Unprocessed foods also
“We like knowing where our
                                                     economy.                                                      generally require less packaging.
food comes from and how it is
                                                       Food so closely links our                Fast Fact              Sometimes sustainable foods
grown. Having a wide variety                                                               Organic produce has
of fresh vegetables every week                       personal health to that of                                       cost more than their indus-
                                                                                           much higher levels of
has helped us be healthier eat-                      the planet, that by eating           antioxidants, essential     trial alternatives, but remem-
ers, and buying them locally has                     for the health of the planet        fatty acids, and vitamins    ber that you get what you
made us more environmentally-                        we also eat for the health           such as vitamin C and       pay for. Food is so closely tied
aware consumers.”                                    of our bodies. Since produce                                    to our health and the health
            Dave, Racine, Wisconsin                  bought at a local farmers mar-                                of the land—does it always
                                                     ket doesn’t have to travel very                           make sense to choose the cheapest
For more information on CSA’s in
                                                     far, it is often harvested just before sale,       option? Sometimes the cheapest option
Wisconsin visit

   110 Eat Well                                                                                               More resources at
isn’t really the cheapest at all if we         you of a trip to Japan. Locally grown    with an estimated 200 additional
factor in health costs, the cost of            food celebrates our culture. ¡Buen       organic farms that are uncertified.
damaging the environment, and                  provecho! Bon appétit! Manga!
other externalities which are not fac-                                                  of certified organic livestock.5
tored into the ‘sale price’ Moreover,
                           .                   What’s Happening Now?                      Wisconsin also has nearly 200
we all have products we’re willing to Living in Wisconsin provides us                   farmers markets—more than Illinois,
pay a bit more for to get higher qual- with numerous opportunities to                   Minnesota, and Michigan.6
ity—whether it’s clothing or elec-             enjoy affordable, high quality
tronics—so why not food?                              food. Farmers markets, food       What Can You Do?
   Eating well isn’t just about                          cooperatives, and local gro-   Knowing how and where your food
                                       Fast Fact
being green and healthy—           Locally grown fruit     cery stores offer healthy    is grown, harvested, and processed is
it’s also about pleasure.          and vegetables are       produce, dairy, and         important for your health, the natu-
It’s joyful to bite into a         usually sold within      meats year-round, and       ral environment, and the local and
crisp, tart Wisconsin apple         24 hours of being      Community Supported          global economy. In our busy lives,
or savor some creamy                                      Agriculture (CSA) farms in    it can sometimes seem daunting or
artisanal cheese, made a few                            the area deliver a wide vari-   time-consuming to select, cook, and
miles away, spread on fresh bread                   ety of produce throughout the       eat local, organic, and whole foods.
from the farmers market. Maybe                 growing season to their members.         The following pages will give you
rhubarb pie carries memories of your             Wisconsin has 669 certified organ-      many easy and fun ways to eat well.
grandmother, or edamame reminds                ic farms, second only to California,

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                                 Eat Well 111

FIRST STEPS                            NEXT STEPS                                  and exquisite flavor. Green zebra
❏ During each grocery shopping         ❏ Investigate some of the items that        tomato anyone?
  trip, buy one product from a local     make up a normal meal. How            ❏ Try growing one or two of your
  producer rather than one that has      many items are labeled with their       favorite vegetables. Start in a
  traveled far.                          geographic origin? How many             sunny corner of your yard, or use
                                         miles have those foods traveled         pots on your patio or balcony.
❏ Visit one of the grocery store
                                         to reach your table?                    Tomatoes are especially easy to
  cooperatives in your area and
  explore the types of local foods     ❏ Ask your grocery store to label         grow.
                                         the origin of produce.                ❏
  about joining the co-op.             ❏ Get to know a vendor at a farm-
❏ Locate and visit your most conve-      ers market. Learn what varieties          chives, thyme, rosemary, and
  nient farmers market, whether it’s     are available and get a feel for          basil make great seasonings and
  near home or work.                     how they’re grown.                        garnishes and can be grown on a
                                                                                   sunny windowsill.
❏ Ask your favorite restaurant         ❏ Try heirloom varieties of veg-
  where they buy their produce.          etables: varieties that have been     ❏ If you don’t have your own gar-
  If they are not buying locally,        passed down through generations         den, get to know a gardener. Offer
  ask them if they would consider        of families because of their valued     to weed for them in exchange
  buying a couple items from local       characteristics. Many are known         for produce come harvest time
  farms.                                 for their beautiful colors, shapes,     (when they have tomatoes com-
                                                                                 ing out of their ears).

112 Eat Well                                                                       More resources at

Help Children Eat Well

Here’s why you should help your child
eat well, setting up healthy eating habits     of many fruits and vegetables than an
for life.                                      average adult, making them more vul-
                                               nerable to harmful pesticide residues in
                                               their early development.11
  eat the recommended 5 servings of

                                                                                                                                      Jack Kloppenburg
  fruits and vegetables a day.9              Learn more at Wisconsin’s Homegrown
                                             lunch project. For more information, visit
  connections with the land and learn
  where food comes from.                                                                  Students enjoying a Wisconsin Homegrown
                                                                                          Lunch meal at Chavez Elementary School in
  toxins are calculated for a 150-pound                                                   Madison.
  male, not taking into account the
  special vulnerability of children before
  birth and in early life.10

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                                        Eat Well 113
Branch Out                                             ❏ Eat your weeds as fresh local greens!       ❏ Convert a sunny part of your yard
                                                         Some of our most common weeds are             into a vegetable garden with a long-
                                                         tasty and nutritious, such as lamb’s          lasting supply of fresh produce.
                                                         quarters, dandelions, purslan, and
                                                                                                     ❏                                           -
                                                         violets. There are many good books
                                                                                                         ing a diversity of plantings that can
                                                         and online resources available about
                                                                                                         support beneficial insects and also
                                                         edible wild plants.
                                                                                                         spread out the risk of crop loss.

                                                       P                                             ❏ If you don’t have a yard, sign up for
                                                                                                       a community garden plot. Find one
                                    Jack Kloppenburg
                                                       ❏ Subscribe to a local Community                through your local city office, library,
                                                         Supported Agriculture (CSA) farm              or on the internet.
                                                         and receive a box of seasonal fresh
                                                         vegetables throughout the growing           ❏ Invite a local farmer to an EnAct or
                                                         season. If a whole box is too much            other neighborhood gathering to dis-
Vegetables you thought you
                                                         for your household, you can share a           cuss the benefits of locally produced
didn’t like as a kid may taste
different to you as an adult. Try                        membership with a neighbor or two             food. Make it festive with samples
something new. You may find                               and reduce the cost.                          from the farm and photos of the
that the freshness of foods from                                                                       fields.
farmers’ markets opens your
                                                           and other fruit at a local farm. It’s a   ❏
tastebuds to foods you didn’t
                                                           fun, low-cost activity to enjoy with          garden with vegetables that not only
know you liked.
                                                           children.                                     survive but thrive in cold weather
                                                                                                         such as lettuce, arugula, and parsnips.

   114 Eat Well                                                                                             More resources at

EnAct Team Potluck

Put your new sustainable food knowledge into prac-
tice during your EnAct team’s final meeting. Many
EnAct teams choose to celebrate their success with a
potluck celebration.

                                                       EnAct team potluck celebration.

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                           Eat Well 115
                                  THINK                                                        See Eliot Coleman’s book The Four
                                                                                               Season Harvest. You can extend the
                                                                                               season by building a cold frame—an
                                                                                               old single-pane window can be reused
                                                                                               to make a great lid.
Save Money and Gas: Make Your Own Lunch
                                                                                           ❏ Raise your own eggs. Some areas now
Dinner leftovers make a great lunch.                                                   -     allow homeowners to keep up to four
You can pack them into lunch-sized             ber and fresh sprouts                         hens in the backyard—check your
containers right after dinner. Save                                                          local ordinances. Chickens also pro-
that rice, veggie dish, pasta, or soup         filling                                        vide a lot of entertainment value.
and enjoy it the next day. Rethink
your concept of “fast food” with                                                           ❏
these easy, healthy, lunch ideas.                                                              locally grown food; check out the
                                                                                               Slow Food movement, Bike the Barns
Lunch ideas:                                                                                   CSA tour, or Madison’s Food for
                                                                                               Thought Festival.

   egg salad
                                         Consider starting a “Leftover Potluck” at
   celery, or apples                     your office. Everyone brings a small serving
                                         of leftovers from home and you can trade or
   and tomato

116 Eat Well                                                                                      More resources at

Urban Chickens

“From participating in EnAct I discovered       To determine your local poultry ordi-
that you can legally have up to four hens       nances, check the municipal or com-
in the City of Madison. I immediately           munity laws governing your property,
became infatuated with the idea of hav-         which could be a city ordinance or
ing chickens and mail-ordered some day-         county policy.
old chicks in May of 2007.
                                                If you’re interested in learning more about
We converted an existing sandbox in our         bringing chickens to your urban commu-
backyard into a coop using mostly free          nity, visit
and found materials. Our three hens are a
pleasure to watch and so easy to care for.
Now my husband and I are getting fresh
eggs; having chickens is very rewarding!”
                                                                                              Kristy poses with Penny, her Rhode Island Red
         Kristy Hanselman, Madison, Wisconsin                                                 chicken, perched on her shoulder.

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                                              Eat Well 117
                                                    ACTION STEPS: Eat with the Seasons

                                                    FIRST STEPS
                                                    F                                              ❏ Use recipes that focus on fresh sea-
                                                                                                     sonal foods. Find them in regional
                                                    ❏ Eat seasonally. Learn what’s in season
                                                                                                     farmers market cookbooks, CSA
                                                      by watching labels in the produce
                                                                                                     websites and newsletters, or check out
                                                      section, visiting a grocery co-op that
                                                                                                     Madison Area Community Supported
                                                      specializes in local food, a farmers
                                                                                                     Agriculture Coalition’s cookbook,
                                                      market, or going online to a local

                                 Jack Kloppenburg
                                                                                                     From Asparagus to Zucchini: A Guide to
                                                      CSA farm website. You’ll enjoy fresh
                                                                                                     Cooking Farm-Fresh, Seasonal Produce,
                                                      local food almost all year round, have
                                                      fresher, tastier meals, support local
Check out these carrots!                              farmers, and save money.                     ❏
                                                                                                       vegetables and fruits from your gar-
Children and neighbors care                         ❏
                                                                                                       den or from the farmers market by
for 330 family garden plots                             available seasonally. Enjoy the creativ-
                                                                                                       canning, freezing, or pickling them.
and over 100 households                                 ity of featuring these ingredients.
pick up weekly bags of fresh
organic vegetables from the
Troy Gardens community farm,
which integrates mixed-income
green-built housing, community
gardens, an organic farm, and
restored prairie and woodlands

   118 Eat Well                                                                                           More resources at

Genetically Modified Organisms

Genetically modified organisms (GMOs)       Why Be Concerned?                          For more information on campaigns
are crops that have had genetic material                                              against GMOs and other food safety
inserted from other organisms for these                                               issues, see
                                             resistance can lead to greater quanti-
                                             ties used, as well as to food contain-
                                             ing antibiotic-resistant genes.
                                             spread by wind and insects to non-

                                                                                                                                Jack Kloppenburg
                                             GMO farms.

                                             be damaged.

                                                                                      GMO-free tomatoes.
                                             environment may result, such as food

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                                 Eat Well 119
What Makes                            ACTION STEPS: Beverage Choices
Good Coffee?
                                      FIRST STEPS                                     ❏ Buy local beers brewed in your area.
Fair Trade strives to ensure cof-
fee farmers a fair price for their    ❏ Drink tap water instead of bottled
harvests, safe working conditions,                                                      to find a brewery near you.
                                        water. Tap water is regulated and
living wages, and promotes envi-        tested, is often of superior quality to         ❏ Drink wine from local Wisconsin
ronmental sustainability (certifica-
                                        bottled water, and uses much                        vineyards such as Botham, Woller-
tion applies to other food and
beverage products too).                 less energy for transporta-                            sheim, and Spurgeon. For a com-
                                        tion and packaging.                 Fast Fact
   Shade grown coffee, rather                                                                    plete listing, visit www.wiswine.
                                                                        Milk is Wisconsin’s
than being grown on open                                                                           com.
                                      ❏ Look for the “rBGH-           official state beverage.
plantations, is partially shaded                                     Wisconsin’s 1,250,000+
by trees. Such plantations reduce
                                        Free” label on your                                        ❏ When buying coffee, cocoa,
                                                                         dairy cows each
clear-cutting and play a key role       milk, chees, and                  produce about            and chocolate, look for the
in the conservation of migratory        yogurt, and ask your             6 gallons of milk         “Fair Trade,” “Organic,” or
birds that find a sanctuary in their     local coffee shop to use               a day.            “Shade-grown” labels.
forest-like environment. This cof-      it too. Many Wisconsin
fee is also called “bird-friendly.”                                                          ❏ Buy fair trade food and beverages
                                        farmers no longer use recom-
   Organic coffee production does                                                           as gifts, and spread the word.
                                        binant Bovine Growth Hormones
not involve the use of chemical
                                        (rBGH) for health and cost reasons.
fertilizers or pesticides and thus                                                      NEXT STEPS
minimizes harm to the soil and        ❏ Enjoy the distinct flavors, names,
tree canopy (see Organic and                                                            ❏ Consider buying organic milk.
                                        and labels of local beer and wine and
Beyond on page 126).                    sample locally distilled brandy, vodka, ❏ Drink from a reusable beverage
Source: Fairtrade Labeling              and liqueurs.                                       bottle—preferably stainless steel or

    120 Eat Well                                                                             More resources at
                                             Everyone Deserves Healthy Food
                                             You and your EnAct team can
   aluminum, which don’t leach chemi-        try some of these simple steps to
   cals like most plastic bottles.           extend the benefits of eating well to
                                             those in need:
❏ When meeting friends or business
  associates for coffee, suggest a place     ❏ Donate your extra garden
  that serves fair trade, organic, and/or       produce to a local food pantry,
  shade-grown coffee.                           community meals program, or
                                                senior citizens center. Inquire
❏ Encourage your favorite café or gro-          individually to learn what they
  cery store to carry fair trade, organic,      can use.
  and shade-grown coffee. Write them
                                             ❏ Donate healthy, organic, non-

                                                                                                                              Jack Kloppenburg
  a letter including sources of products
                                                perishable food to pantries and
  they could order.                             foodbanks. Items that are most
                                                in demand include peanut but-
                                                                                   Farmers markets are family friendly.
PROJECTS                                        ter and jelly, pasta and sauce,
                                                canned fruit, cereal, and fruit
❏ Save energy and money by replacing
                                                juice. Other healthy ready-to-eat meals are desirable as well.
  the water cooler at the office with
  pitchers of filtered tap water in the       ❏ If you work or volunteer for an organization that has leftover food avail-
  refrigerator.                                 able, inquire about whether it can donate leftovers to a food pantry or
                                                community meals program.
❏ Find out more about Fair Trade coffee
  by organizing a showing of the film         ❏ Plant a garden row for the hungry. Crops that are good to donate to
                                                food pantries are cabbage, squash, pumpkins, and potatoes. Plant a Row
  Black Gold with your EnAct group.
                                                is a national non-profit group.
EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                                 Eat Well 121
ACTION STEPS: Meat and Seafood
FIRST STEPS                            ❏ Look for grass-fed beef instead of         and the fish are often kept in
                                         grain-fed beef. If you can’t find           poor conditions. Studies on
❏ If you eat meat, reduce your
                                         grass-fed beef, consider organic           salmon suggest that wild-caught
  consumption by planning at least
                                         beef as a next best choice.                fish are even better for you.
  one meat-free meal per week.
                                       ❏ Choose locally raised meat and         ❏ Encourage local restaurants and
❏ Find healthy, environmentally
                                         poultry, preferably pasture-raised       food stores to seek out trap-
  sustainable seafood that is not
                                         and without antibiotics. These           caught shrimp.
  over-fished and that contains
                                         meats are available at farmers
  lower levels of mercury and
                                         markets and grocery stores.            PROJECT
  seafood chart at right, download                                              ❏ Get to know Wisconsin farmers
  Monterey Bay Aquarium’s pocket-      NEXT STEPS                                 who raise meat and poultry. Find
  sized guides at,      ❏ Try eating vegetarian for a week.        them at
  or go to for a                                                  ucts/wisconsin.html.
                                       ❏ Replace one of the fish from the
  link to the DNR’s guide for eating
                                         “bad” list with a fish from                     ❏ Visit a local farm. For exam-
  fish in Wisconsin.
                                         the “good” list in your         Fast Fact        ple, the Trautman Family
❏ Look for labels such as “Organic,”     favorite recipe.             For every pound      Farm in Stoughton, Wis-
                                                                     of shrimp caught       consin, features grass-fed
                                       ❏ Choose wild-caught           in nets, up to 10
  “No Antibiotics,” and (for fish)                                                           beef, and pastured pork,
                                         fish over farm-raised.      pounds of bycatch is
  “Wild-Caught.”                                                       discarded dead.      poultry, eggs, and dairy.
                                         Fish farming can use
                                         unsustainable practices

122 Eat Well                                                                       More resources at

Best and Worst Seafood Choices

Best                             Worst

                                                     To find information on Wisconsin
                                                     fish advisories, visit

                                                     Sources: Environmental Defense and

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                    Eat Well 123
ACTION STEPS: Wholesome Foods
FIRST STEPS                                ers and cheese, carrots, dried          baby food jars. A simple mechani-
                                           fruit, nuts, popcorn, or a piece of     cal food grinder helps. Visit
❏ Look through your grocery list
                                           fruit—nature’s fast food!      for ideas.
  and identify items that are pro-

  (whole food) alternative for         NEXT STEPS
                                                                                 ❏ Find out what kinds of foods
  one of the processed foods—try       ❏
                                                                                   are served in your child’s school
  whole popcorn for a snack, fresh         as snacks for your children
                                                                                   lunchroom and for snacks in the
  vegetables instead of frozen or          to take to school, rather than
                                                                                   classroom. Encourage your child’s
  canned, and fresh fruit instead of       pre-packaged processed foods.
                                                                                   teacher and administration to
  applesauce or packaged snacks.           Include a cloth napkin. Visit
                                                                                   provide fresh, nutritious foods
                                  for ideas.
❏ Cook at home with children                                                       and to incorporate food educa-
  instead of going out for din-        ❏ Choose one thing that you usu-            tion into their curriculum. The
  ner. Their favorite foods can          ally make from a box or package           Wisconsin Homegrown Lunch
  be healthy and fun to make at          and make it from scratch, using           program may have ideas and/or
  home. Start with make-your-own         no processed ingredients.                 resources available to help with
  pizzas, smoothies, or sub sand-                                                  this. See
                                       ❏ Feed babies and young children
  wiches with their favorite cheese                                                for more information.
                                         unprocessed foods that you pre-
  and vegetables.
                                         pare yourself. Your children will       ❏ Grow cherry tomatoes, snap peas,
❏ Keep healthy snacks at home, at        be healthier, and you will save           climbing beans, and other fun,
  work, and in your car. Try crack-      money and reduce waste from               snack-friendly vegetables.

124 Eat Well                                                                       More resources at

Food Standards and Labels

Labels That Tell You a Lot                     Labels That Tell You a Little
USDA Organic food is pro-                      The USDA has not developed standards
duced without any synthetic                    for some labels.
fertilizers, herbicides, or
pesticides; sewage sludge;                     “No Antibiotics Animals” should not have
ionizing radiation; or geneti-                 received antibiotics during their lifetime.
cally modified organisms. Animals must          Some producers may still give animals
be fed organically grown feed without          antibiotics at “sub-therapeutic” levels to
any animal byproducts, have access to          promote growth.                               Happy cows in Montfort, Wisconsin.
the outdoors or pasture, and be raised
without antibiotics or growth hormones.        “rBGH-Free Milk” does not contain this        in a feed lot or barn pen (or cages in the
                                               synthetic, genetically engineered growth      case of poultry). There is no standard for
Beyond Organic is a movement of private        hormone that is designed to increase          what percentage of the animal’s life was
certification organizations whose stan-         milk production.                              spent in pasture.
dards are more stringent than the USDA
organic standards, and may also include        “Pasture-Raised Animals” were raised on
fair labor, farm size, or conservation stan-   pasture eating grass and other plants
dards/requirements not considered by           found there, as opposed to being raised
the USDA.                                      eating grain and forage brought to them

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                                            Eat Well 125
Most Pesticides    ACTION STEPS: Organic and Beyond
                   FIRST STEPS                                  ❏ Some farmers go beyond organic
                   ❏ During each major grocery shopping           standards. Talk to your local farmers
                     trip, buy one organic product instead        to find out what sustainable practices
                     of a conventional one.                       they use.

                   ❏ Wash your fruits and vegetables in
                     warm, mildly soapy water whether
                     they are organic or conventional.          ❏ Conduct a taste test with your family,
                     Even organic produce may have resi-          neighbors, or EnAct team. Compare
                     due of manure and fertilizers that are       the taste of local and organic apples,
                     unhealthy to consume.                        tomatoes, etc. with conventional vari-
Least Pesticides
                                                                  eties and notice the difference.
                   NE STEPS
                   ❏ Consider organic choices for common                        Fast Fact
                                                                              Eating the 12 least
                     fruits and vegetables whose conven-
                                                                             contaminated fruits
                     tionally grown counterparts are espe-                 and vegetables instead
                     cially high in pesticides (see sidebar).                of the 12 most can
                                                                            reduce your pesticide
                                                                              exposure by up to

  126 Eat Well                                                        More resources at

Choose Organic Food to Protect Your Future

Organically produced foods nourish the         Not only are foods grown on the rich fer-
soil, protect the water and air, and pre-      tile soils of organic farms healthier, but in
vent toxins such as antibiotics, pesticides,   eating them you are supporting a safer,
herbicides, and manure from polluting          more local food production system. You
the environment. Healthy soil produces         are making an investment in the quality

                                                                                                              Organic Valley Family of Farms
healthy plants, animals, and people, and       of food and the health of the environ-
a healthier environment.                       ment your children will enjoy. The future
                                               is organic!
By choosing Organic Valley and Organic
Prairie foods, you are choosing foods          To learn more about the Organic Valley
produced by a cooperative of local fam-        cooperative and family farmers near you,
ily farmers, so your food miles will be        visit

EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                 Eat Well 127

Plastics and Food Safety

It’s best to microwave food in glass or ceramic   ❏ Polycarbonates (rigid plastics, used to
containers. To reduce potential leaching from        make Nalgene water bottles) can leach
plastics:                                            bisphenolA, a suspected hormone disrup-
❏ Choose plastics labeled #1, #2, #4, or #5          tor. Coated metal water bottles are safer.
   for storing food.                              ❏ Plastic trays and containers provided with
❏ Avoid #3, #6, and #7 for food storage.             microwave meals are intended for one-
                                                     time use and should not be reused.
❏ Avoid putting hot fatty foods in #3 PVC
   plastic containers. They can leach the         ❏ Do not let plastic wrap or bags touch food
   compounds adipates and phthalates, some           while heating.
   of which are carcinogenic.
                                                  Source: GreenGuide

128 Eat Well                                                                                  More resources at
Take Action to Eat Well

Short-term actions:                 Long-term actions:                  Notes/ideas:

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EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                               Eat Well 129
                                                                                                                      Jack Kloppenburg
Students visit Luna farm.

References                                September 2003.      3.     “Bottled Water.” Natural
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      “Sustainability of Meat-based    2. Lang, T., 2001. “Food Safety and

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130 Eat Well                                                                      More resources at
     and Analysis.” Sustainable          8. Food Routes Network. “The Best   12. Wisconsin Agricultural Statistics
                                            Tasting Food Ripens Close to         Service, August 2008.
    Anne-de’Bellevue, Quebec.               Home,”       13. Environmental Working Group.
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    Service.              York, 1997.                          methodology.php.
    farmersmarkets.                     11. Natural Resource Defense         16. Food & Water Watch,
 7. Cleeton, J. “Organic Foods in           Council, “Raw Facts,” www.           “How Much Do Labels
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EnAct: Steps to Greener Living                                                                      Eat Well 131

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