Wednesdays are food days here thanks to the weekly What to Cook Wednesday feature so I figured it was a good time to talk about other food topics too. It’s no secret that I am a food lover! I even got a cookbook for my anniversary (thanks Mathlete!). I especially like meat: steak, chicken, pork…I don’t discriminate!
Of course, the bargain shopper in me is screaming “No, we can’t make this lifestyle switch.” So, I decided to do a little research to see, if like fruits and vegetables, there are some meats that it makes more sense to buy conventional and some organic. I read up on organic farming practices on sites like Niman Ranch and Greensbury Market which both sell organic meats either through an organic meat delivery service or local grocers. Obviously, since those places sell organic meats, there was a potential bias there. Plus, I needed to consider the cost aspect in addition to the potential health ones.
According to an article in Business Week, organic meats make a lot of sense when they are being consumed by small children and/or pregnant women. Obviously, our household fills the small children aspect of that recommendation. Overall, the recommendation from Business Week (and several other publications I read that looked at the cost/benefit of organic meats) is that it really comes down to your budget and how large you think the threat of disease spread from the animal to your body through consumption is.
Bottom line: If your budget can handle the purchase of organic meat all the time, go for it! There are a lot of resources out there to purchase organic meats even if your grocery store doesn’t have it readily available. However, if you can’t afford to make it part of your every day meat purchases (we certainly can’t!), it is a good idea to try and go organic when dealing with meats that you know you won’t cook fully (i.e. if you like your steak medium or below) or meat that is pre-ground. I also plan to try and take advantage of sales and promotions (like the recent Living Social deal to Whole Foods!) to help make organic meats, produce and dairy more accessible to our family.
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