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  1. #1
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    "Organic" vegetables from China

    Given that previous governmental regulations in China seem to allow their gluten manufacturers to add plastic resin to their gluten and call it "protein" I was just wondering what the Chinese definition of "organic" vegetables might be.
    In my search for organic produce I've noticed a lot of items with this label in my local supermarket freezer, I suspect "made in China" and "organic" may be a little misleading? Thoughts anyone?

  2. #2
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    Buy local organics and not worry about it.

  3. #3
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    Not always available.

  4. #4
    Sensible shoes. CastIron's Avatar
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    IMHO "Made in China" and "Organic" are contrary terms. Then again, that's a helluva long way to haul food to be cost effective, so it's almost a moot point.
    Mike
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CastIron
    IMHO "Made in China" and "Organic" are contrary terms. Then again, that's a helluva long way to haul food to be cost effective, so it's almost a moot point.
    I agree, and this was my mindset for the last couple years when buying organic veggies. Then I started looking more closely at the label, most of this stuff IS grown in China. And they don't exactly print the country of origin in bold type on the label, you just about need a magnifying glass.
    My reason for the post in the first place was to bring this to the attention of others who may not have noticed this.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Terex's Avatar
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    They may not fertilize with chemicals, but instead, use an "organic" compound containing human and animal waste. You should watch the Discovery HD program about environmental conditions (including agricultural methods) in China that came out last year.
    "It could be anything. Scrap booking, high-stakes poker, or the Santa Fe lifestyle. Just pick a dead-end and chill out 'till you die."

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    I was buying these big beautiful bags of "organic" broccoli when I finally spotted the "grown in China" mark in microscopic letters on the bottom back of the bag. Things like that and lettuce are almost impossible to grow without using pesticides, and the idea that Chinese farms are being honest about their techniques is ridiculous. I'm willing to bet that not only are pesticides used but in quantities that would make American non-organic commercial farmers cringe.
    This is a country that purposely puts PLASTIC RESINS in grain products to misrepresent protein values. And am I the only one who thinks it's pretty unlikely that that contaminated gluten is confined to pet foods? Especially after hearing the FDA say that such practice poses no immediate health risk to humans?

    Our government PAYS farms in this country to NOT grow food, and for what? So we can import agricultural products from a country that has absolutely no concept of business ethics or any system of regulating or safeguarding their own consumer products let alone what they export to a country who they don't like very much in the first place. And now the FDA wants to remove regulations requiring package contents disclosure including point of origin.

    Okay, I'm off my soapbox now. I will be watching where my food comes from much more closely from now on though, and Chinese food products of any kind are definitely off my list.

  8. #8
    Sensible shoes. CastIron's Avatar
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    If you think their produce is scary, look into the seafood (from MANY places).
    Mike
    Quote Originally Posted by cedricbosch View Post
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  9. #9
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    I'm Chinese, and I wouldn't trust it to be "organic." There are some real horror stories about counterfeit and fake items. Fake eggs, anyone? They look like real eggs, shell and everything. But you get a chemical surprise inside!

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    I don't knowingly ingest anything from China or Mexico. There are constant articles in the media about tainted food stuffs from China. The most recent concern fish, toothpaste (contained a component used in antifreeze) and the pet food. There's no enforcement of any standards that might be imposed by the importers. There's no rule of law in Mexico and very little in the rural areas of China so anything goes in the processing plants.

    There's also been a recent article on how the Chinese government is alarmed by the rise in cancer in the population.

    The few supplements I take I won't purchase at Wal-Mart as they force their producers to manufacture in China. I know that first hand from a local owner of a small factory. Wal-mart wanted to carry his product, but the stipulation was he had to switch production to China. It would have made him very wealthy, but he refused.

    Al.

  11. #11
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  12. #12
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    Looks like they found a way to take care of that pesky over population problem.
    Check the labels carefully folks, a lot more of what you are buying is from there than you might realize.

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    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    Grow them yourself...it isn't that hard. I have a garden. You can freeze a lot or can for the winter. I also have chickens for both eggs and meat. The taste is vastly superior and I know what I am eating. I also know the chickens are living a very good life free ranging and eating my dinner leftovers. It isn't hard to do at all.
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

  14. #14
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    Growing them yourself is awesome but really isn't possible or practical for most of us city dwellers.

  15. #15
    Killing Rabbits
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    Quote Originally Posted by slowandsteady
    I also have chickens for both eggs and meat. The taste is vastly superior and I know what I am eating. I also know the chickens are living a very good life free ranging and eating my dinner leftovers. It isn't hard to do at all.
    What kinds of human food do chickens prefer?

    I think I would eat less chicken if I raised them myself. I bet some skinless chicken fanatic bodybuilders eat 3 chickens a day. Same with homegrown vegetables, say each pea plant grows 20 pods that is only a couple servings of vegetables. So 52 plants just to eat it once a week? When I was a kid half the peas never even made it into the house, we would eat them fresh outside while getting in crap from mom for eating too many of her vegetables (backwards). Potatoes seem to be the only thing that you can grow, and store enough of, to keep you somewhat fed (at least up north).

    Sadly this just shows how dependant we are on industrial agriculture. The more organic the western nations go the more we have to further starve out the rest of the world. Apparently the world population would have stopped growing many years ago without the discovery of the Haber process of nitrogen fixation. Pesticide and herbicide free product is important but avoidance of all chemicals is foolish and unethical. Besides food grown in crap is more likely to carry a deadly e-coli infection (HUS).

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enthalpic
    Pesticide and herbicide free product is important but avoidance of all chemicals is foolish and unethical.

    I need this statement explained a little more clearly. We are hardly growing at full capacity in this country, or anywhere near it given that commercial farmers are actually payed by the government to NOT grow on certain percentages of acreage. If you're suggesting that pesticides, herbicides, and chemical fertilizer are absolutely necessary at this point in time in order to gain the greatest possible harvest per land unit then I have to disagree. There are a couple organic farms in this area that are doing increasingly well as demand increases and as demand continues to rise hopefully more locals will switch in order to take advantage of a larger market, making this stuff easier to find.
    My only point here was to make people aware that much of the produce being sold in this country is coming to us from a country with absolute disregard for any and all consumer safety precautions. given the current state of affairs I think we should stop importing all Chinese foodstuffs and stop subsidizing our own farmers to keep them from fully developing their own bounty. I certainly didn't realize so much of our produce came from over seas.
    I don't understand why our own government seems so hell bent on increasing our dependence on international goods to the point where we produce almost nothing in any sector of consumer product.

  17. #17
    Killing Rabbits
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    Ideally fertilization is managed on an “add as little as possible” basis. To do this one can test the soil and measure what deficiencies are present and add that compound. Sure adding chemically pure isolates sounds bad but consider some alternatives.

    In many fields the nitrogen content is the limiting nutrient. When yields fall farmers will up the nitrogen to the required level using cheap materials (manure, sewage or municipally digested sludge, drilling wastes (not kidding)). In many cases farmers will add manure to the fields until nitrogen demands are met. However, because the fertilizer added was a waste mixture of nitrogen, other nutrients, organic matter, toxins, heavy metals, etc he inadvertently added a bunch of other stuff to the field at the same time. Here in Alberta almost all fields have excessive amounts of phosphorus runoff because the N ratio of manure is not ideal.

    Now consider if a factory separated that nitrogen from the manure, while producing biogas, the exact amount of nitrogen required could be applied to the field, protecting freshwater systems. Sure organic content is required, but we can measure that too.

    Responsible use of pesticides and herbicides can be argued on a humanitarian/economic basis; but I won’t.

  18. #18
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    Ah I see. I misunderstood the direction of your statement. Yes hear in Massachusetts there is a problem with fertilizers from commercial farms leaking into the environment too. It isn't all manure though, mostly chemical fertilizers are the problem causing deteriorating conditions in the rivers and ponds, excess nitrogen and phosphorous levels are causing massive algae blooms creating poor environment for wildlife.
    Certainly not a problem confined to organics.

    Your point about managing specific levels of specific nutrients through targeted addition of chemicals is valid. Personally I don't have as much problem with fertilizer as with the poisons we use to control pests, many of which are applied at unsafe levels and do not easily break down in the environment. We aren't as bad as some countries with this, most farmers are required to obtain training and licensing before being allowed to purchase and use the chemicals.
    I suspect China's current skyrocketing cancer rates in their rural areas probably has to do with their total disregard for warning labels on pesticide bottles.

    we're still killing ourselves with the stuff here too, just at a slower rate.

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