Bananas have undergone lots of changes in recent years, mainly being bred for excessive sweetness and flavor. But last summer, scientists at the 244th National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society reported the development of a spray-on coating that could be available to slow the browning of bananas.Read More:Why is there a Crab Shell Coating on Your Fruit?
At this year’s Boston Seafood Show, which opened on March 20th, worldwide organic farming advocate Naturland is urging the fishing industry to consider more eco-friendly fishing techniques.
Hans Hohenester, chairman of the Naturland board of directors, says current fishing practices are unnatural, unsustainable, and contaminate waters with harmful chemicals and antibiotics.
That’s why Naturland has impressive standards and strict procedures for ensuring organic and sustainable production.Read More:Naturland Promoting Eco Fishing & Aquaculture
Schools can submit applications for one of 20 It’s All About the Fruit grants of $500. The application deadline is Nov. 29. Winners will be announced in January.
Recipients will be selected based on plans to promote nutrition education, ideas for incorporating fruit-tree activities in curricula and the ability to sustain the program over multiple years.Read More:Jamba Juice Teams with National Gardening Association to Bring Fruit Trees to U.S. Schools
Fall may have arrived, but we’re going to endure triple-digit temperatures in Southern California next week.
While water is the best way to stay hydrated, blueberry juice provides a special antioxidant-rich treat.
Today’s recipe adds a blueberry twist to traditional limeade. All of the ingredients should be available at a well-stocked natural and organic food store.
Note: For cocktail hour, check out our previously posted recipe for Organic Blueberry Mojitos.Read More:Organic Blueberry-Mint Limeade
Locally grown organic watermelons are on the way out. We’re fast approaching the tail end of peak season.
While melons may be available year-round, know what you’re buying. The U.S. peak season runs from May to September. If you purchase a watermelon between October and April, odds are you’re buying an imported fruit that has traveled a long way to reach your table. This reduces freshness and increases your carbon footprint.
Take advantage of the final 2010 bounty: September’s crops, which are grown primarily in Central California, Oklahoma and Texas.
Today’s recipe will appeal to adults and children alike, and it’s a heart-healthy alternative to chips and pretzels. Also check out our recently posted recipes for Grilled Spicy Watermelon and Watermelon and Tomato Salad.Read More:Organic Watermelon Dippers
Planning a Labor Day barbecue?
Transform sweet organic watermelon into a savory side dish with a Thai-inspired sauce.
Grill watermelon wedges until they’re caramelized, drizzle them with the tangy sauce, and garnish with fresh organic cilantro. The recipe can accompany ribs, chicken or shrimp.
All of the ingredients should be available at a well-stocked natural and organic food store. Enjoy!Read More:Grilled Spicy Watermelon
Organic watermelon is a nutritional best bet, with more than 1,200 varieties available for savvy snacking. Farmers in 44 states grow these juicy members of the Cucurbitaceae plant family, with Georgia, Florida, Texas, California and Arizona leading the pack.
Here are 10 reasons to head to the summer produce aisle.
1. Get your vitamins—naturally
A 2-cup serving of watermelon is an excellent source of vitamins A and C:
2. Potassium is your BFF
Potassium helps maintain water balance. If your potassium level is low, you may experience muscle cramps.
A 2-cup serving of watermelon provides 270 mg potassium: 8% of your daily requirement. A watermelon is also more than 90% water, so a few cups will help you stay hydrated.
3. Watermelon is heart-healthy
Watermelon contains amino acids that help maintain healthy arteries and blood flow.
“With its naturally sweet taste, watermelon can be a wonderful way to get more fruit into a sensible low-saturated-fat, low-cholesterol diet,” says Maureen Storey, PhD, former director of the Center for Food, Nutrition and Agriculture Policy at the University of Maryland.
4. It helps protect you against cancer
Red-fleshed watermelon contains high concentrations of lycopene, an antioxidant that helps reduce cancer risk. A 1.5-cup serving contains 14 to 15 mg lycopene, according to plant physiologist Penelope Perkins-Veazie, PhD, a professor at the Plants for Human Health Institute at North Carolina State University. The redder the watermelon, the more lycopene it offers.
5. Pour me a drink
As with our story on making lemon-flavored ice cubes, you can create watermelon ice cubes (above) by pureeing the melon’s flesh and freezing it in ice cube trays.
6. Watermelon is kid-friendly
Few children will turn down a slice of juicy watermelon, so make it a part of their regular fruit and veggie intake. Be creative in the kitchen. Let your kids use a melon baller to form watermelon spheres.
7. Baby, you can drive my car
Place cubes of melon in travel containers for hydration and a nutritional boost during long car trips. Bring napkins!
8. Watermelon shines at organic picnics
Labor Day is almost here. Make an Americana Basket (above) for backyard barbecues and potlucks.
9. Get thee to a farmers’ market
Not sure where your local farmers’ market is located? Local Harvest will solve this problem in a jiff.
10. Grow your own
Kits like Ecosource’s Organic Grow Your Own Seedling Starter Kits are great gift items, and they make the job easy. More advanced gardeners can pick up a copy of Amy Goldman’s Melons for the Passionate Grower.
Follow me on Twitter: @BarbGoesOrganicRead More:10 Reasons to Buy Organic Watermelon
Summer bequeaths us an abundance of fresh, juicy, organic blueberries, which you can easily find at natural and organic food stores, mainstream supermarkets, farmers’ markets and roadside stands.
Here are 8 reasons to go blue:
Photo courtesy of the U.S. Highbush Blueberry CouncilRead More:8 Reasons to Buy Organic Blueberries
Fruit-flavored waters are a refreshing change of pace, especially during the hot summer months.
But there are several disadvantages to buying premade brands:
You can overcome these problems by creating your own fruit-infused water, and the Takeya Fruit Infusion Jug makes the job a snap. It’s glam enough for formal entertaining, yet practical enough for everyday use.
The 66-oz. airtight pitcher is made with Takeya’s proprietary AcraGlass, an FDA-approved, nontoxic, BPA-free acrylic that’s lightweight, stain- and odor-resistant, and dishwasher-safe.
Simply add your favorite water and organic fruit, whose flavors will meld naturally. When you’re ready to pour beverages, a built-in screen prevents pieces of fruit from dropping into glasses or mugs.
When you’ve finished serving and want to store leftovers, pop the pitcher in the refrigerator door or lay it on its side on a fridge shelf.
Need a birthday or bridal gift? The aesthetically pleasing pitcher’s retail price is $27.50, and you may qualify for free shipping on Amazon.com.Read More:Infuse Your Drinking Water with Organic Fruit
It stinks to admit it, but most times organic foods are more expensive than the regular stuff; sometimes organic farmers markets are cheaper or about the same.
So how do you go organic on a budget, especially in this miserable United States economy? Easy, you kidnap a genie and make a wish!
No, it’s easier than that. RedPlum, a promotional company that helps sell various food products, from health foods to not-so health foods, has 10 tips for going organic on the cheap.
Guess what number one is? Shopping at a farmers market. Ha! See, I told you. Then again, organic or not, shopping at a farmers market is the best idea. Its less expensive and the produce is a lot fresher and higher quality.
Another tip I really liked is going vegetarian for a couple days each week. I’m a vegetarian and not only is it healthier for you, but fruits and vegetables are a lot cheaper than filet mignon and pork tenderloin.
RedPlum also suggests clipping coupons. No, coupons aren’t just for little old ladies anymore. In this tough economy, if a supermarket is willing to play let’s make a deal, go for it! Then again, I’m a hypocrite; using coupons feels weird to me.
For the complete list of organic tips, head over to RedPlum – do it, do it now!
Here’s some more posts on going organic on a budget:
Image credit: Boston.comRead More:How to Be Organic On a Budget