After a relaxing on a day off with Ben’s Family in Kentucky, got up early and drove to Evansville, IN where our good friend Fred lives there with his beautiful family. They are super community organizers and currenty Fred runs the Downtown Evansville wine tasting room for the Winzerwald Winery. They are committed to showcasing local products, foods, and artists in their storefront and they produce some damn good, non-GMO wine.
We hosted a Fishy Corn meet and greet at the winery, complete with live music from local musician John Dodd. There was a puppet show atop the fishy car’s hood and a local reporter came out to do a story about GMOs, the car and our journey. It was so much fun with old friends and new, and we were sad to continue our journey so soon.
Next, we drove to Louisville KY to one of the 5 locations of the Rainbow Blossom Natural Foods Market. Its a locally grown, run and owned natural food supplier and an excellent resource to the area. When we arrived there was a mama and two little girls waiting with a “I am not a science experiment” sign to greet us!
We had some really insightful conversations. A woman explained to us that after having her first child, she had a miscarriage and a still birth. She has no physical evidence to link these complications and other health problems to Kentucky’s pollution (it in coal country) but she still wonders if she should move her family. One couple told us that they appreciated that we were pushing healthy eating, but reminded us that we were also pushing expensive eating. It led to a long conversation about misplaced government subsidies, and a strategizing session about a very pertinent conundrum: If you only have a small budget to spend on food, what portions should be organic?
We came up with a few strategies:
1-Read the ingredients- Especially in traditional grocery products, stick to short ingredient lists that you can understand and pronounce all the parts of. Often GMOs are hidden in those processed ingredients and unfamiliar words.
2-Buy specialty products in bulk- Products like organic flour, corn meal or raw sugar are healthier, bust costly. Buying them in bulk can cut the price and the packaging.
3-Strategize what produce is safest to buy non-organic and which you should stick to the organic type. There are LISTS that let you know which fruits and veggies have the least pesticides and herbicides sprayed on them, and maybe for those you can opt to buy the non-organic version.
4-Use this non-GMO shopping guide to know which products are safer to buy organic to make sure they contain no GMO ingredients (think about processed foods with sugar (sugarbeets), corn (especially high fructose corn syrup), and soy.
5-Look for local providers of meat, dairy and produce- You can have direct conversations with local providers about their farming practices and occasionally you can gets discounts by buying straight from the source, or trading!
Thats just what we came up with. Any other ideas? Does anyone one know about any preexisting tool kits for GMO free organic eating on a small budget? If not, I’m making one.
We had a great experience at the Rainbow. The store was wonderful, the workers were so helpful, dedicated to their work, and kind. Way to go!
We’ll be driving late into the night tonight and most of the day tomorrow to get all the way to Richmond VA for an awesome film screening and seed bomb creating workshop at the One Tribe before heading on to DC.