Not to bum you out, but we’re here to tell you what you’re not going to hear anywhere else. So, we’re going to let it rip…
Pesticides and Herbs
According to a recent Pesticide Data Program survey by the USDA, out of 10,000 market food samples analyzed by the study, more than 77% of the food sample had detectable pesticide residue.
Yes, this is that same USDA that is largely dominated by agri-business. It’s BIG business.
Not to be throwing shade here, but it can be a very shady business indeed.
I didn’t need my professors in college to tell me about this - but they did. It made me sit up and think twice about the food I consume, and even more so the food I prepare and feed to my family!
Whether you believe that the wolves are “guarding” the henhouse or you have full faith in the current USDA to keep you and your family healthy - over 70% of the food in your local supermarket has pesticide residue.
If that doesn’t give you concern, well read on. Because, unfortunately it gets worse….
Which is the first reason why you need to fully wash store bought fruits, vegetables and herbs. But, you can’t “wash-off” the pesticides that have been grown “into” the plants and are in the tiny crevices of the leaves.
That fact was enough to make my skin crawl, it’s disheartening to know that this pesticide laden produce is often times our main option at supermarkets (there are organic options, but often times the price is 2-3 times that of regular produce and with a big family to feed most can’t afford it).
You can’t “wash-off” E. coli and the like and other harmful bacteria from your herbs
It’s not just Chipotle that has had E. coli outbreaks due to feces in their cilantro.
It’s actually happened in many restaurants across America, it’s beginning to be all an all too common occurrence.
Earlier this year the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) started testing randomly selected herbs (parsley, cilantro and basil). The FDA found dangerous bacteria in 3% to 6% of the samples it tested. Since they aren’t normally cooked, they may harbor nasty bacteria such as salmonella, Listeria monocytogenes and E. coli.
Recently, there was a Cyclospora outbreak linked to fresh basil that sickened hundreds of people in 30 States. This has been a trend in recent summers of consumers being sickened from the parasite Cyclospora cayetanensis, which is spread by eating food or drinking water contaminated with feces. Profuse diarrhea that can last weeks to months is a hallmark of Cyclospora infection, (no thank you!)
Cyclospora outbreaks are typically linked to imported produce, such as basil and cilantro. Multiple restaurants have been tied to the outbreaks.
While the CDC encourages consumers to wash their herbs and vegetables before serving, it doesn’t kill bacteria. So, washing doesn’t reduce the risk. Once E. coli and other bacteria make their way onto the tiny cracks of cilantro leaves and other vegetables, there is still going to be enough bacteria present to get you and your family very sick. This why the CDC always urges people to throw E. coli and other bacteria contaminated herbs away.
When you grow your own herbs - you know they’re clean and safe
Which brings us back to the first reason to grow your own herbs.
When you grow your own herbs, you know they’re clean and safe. Your home-grown herbs are going to be pesticide free and e coli free.
Don’t you feel better already growing your own herbs? I know I do.
Feeding my family food, I know is safe is so important to me, and the cherry (tomato) on-top of growing your own herbs is that they will always test even fresher than what you would buy in the store, talk about (home) farm to table right?!