Organic foods, including produce, dairy and meats, have become a part of any conversation about healthy eating, going green and sustainability. Whether your biggest concerns are your own health, your family’s health, the health and safety of farm workers or the impact our lifestyles have on the planet, there are plenty of reasons to buy organic.
While it doesn’t take much to convince most health-conscious folks that foods that are grown without man-made pesticides and chemical fertilizers are healthier options, a trip to the organic section in any market will quickly show how some families might find it difficult to justify – or simply afford – purchasing organic foods that are often significantly more expensive than their conventional counterparts.
The idea that you can pay now by buying higher-priced organic foods or pay later in healthcare costs helps to justify increasing your food budget, but that still doesn’t mean that everyone can afford to buy organic versions of all of the produce, dairy and meat that they purchase. And even those who can afford going all-organic will likely find that organic produce can be difficult to find when on the road, which can create particular challenges for those living an RV lifestyle.
Of course, short trips are not an issue, since you can easily bring food purchased before embarking on your journey. You might also consider having a small on-the-road garden with some of your favorite organic herbs and vegetables, which will ensure that you always have some organic produce on hand. You can also seek out farmer’s markets while on the road, and might also consider doing a bit of research beforehand to make note of grocery stores that sell organic produce along your route. However, even with all of this preparation, you still might find it difficult to locate a good selection of organic vegetables and fruits while traveling.
This is precisely why it is important to know which foods you should always try to buy organic, as well as when you can get away with buying conventionally grown produce. This will help you make informed decisions about what to seek out and what you might want to skip if only conventional options are available.
Some produce items are not threatened by as many pests, which means they can be grown with fewer pesticides, while others have a thick skin (that we remove before eating) that provides some protection from pesticides. Therefore, if you are on a budget or having difficulty finding organics on the road, here are some fruits and vegetables that are better options when conventional produce is your only option:
• Sweet peas • Asparagus
On the other hand, there are some produce items that should always be purchased in the organic section whenever possible. And some of these fruits and vegetables are so pesticide-laden that you might want to skip them completely if only conventional options are available.
Produce that should be purchased organic includes:
• Tomatoes • Carrots