I had lunch with a colleague last week, an organic advocate, businesswoman and friend. I had not connected with her in far too many years. We both built businesses and believed in organic before there was such a thing. We reminisced about the passion and energy we carried with us as we created new brands in the marketplace. We were eager to promote a different way to grow and produce food; one without harmful inputs that wasn’t dependent on big chemical companies.
We meet years later, both needing a shot of hope and a dose of gratitude.
We reminisce on the California Organic Products Act of 1990. It was a springboard for the national organic regulations we choose to uphold and refine. Where has that passion led us today? Is it all about business? Can we rekindle the fire of that original mission?
We lament that today’s news is chaotic and concerning.
The cacophony of loom and doomed continues to swirl between the headlines, Twitter feeds and URL’s: fake news, hurricane blues, climate change, nuclear range. The EPA, FDA, USDA, all having a field day while everyone’s bitter and all a-Twitter.
Our once laser focus now diluted?
With every sordid tidbit streaming towards us in every manner of delivery, it can be difficult to stay focused on our life mission. Yes, we care about animal welfare, soil health and the future of organic food and fiber. But these seem somehow insignificant in light of multiple natural disasters, sordid allegations and investigations .
We fixate on the latest emperor who has no proverbial clothes getting hung out for society’s agitation cycle.
Like a blemish on our collective psyche.
My friend suggests that perhaps this is the facial we need; something has got to come to a head. This cannot go on forever, can it? Life will return to some kind of normalcy once the pressure has burst and the pendulum has swung to its furthest oscillation. We will come through with clear skin, upright stance and bold step to wipe clean our not-so-clear conscience. This too then shall pass.
We decide that organic is the place where aspiration can be rekindled.
This week as we come together to feast and give thanks, we can focus on an organic menu to bring hope to our future. We can rest assured there will be no hormones or antibiotics in the breast and thighs so snuggly stuffed with breadcrumbs free of glyphosate. The cranberries flooded in pure bogs will carry no residues with EPA limits.
The eggnog will be concocted from cream, milk and eggs laid in humane living conditions. The green beans snapped from Mexican fields safe for farmworkers and their children. The apples turn brown as they should with no tinkering of genes to thwart their appearance. Wash it down with a glass of organic Pinot sans sulfites.
Organic gives us the opportunity to focus on future generations.
The organic grains, produce and meats that we choose leave our natural landscape an unadulterated, more sustainable place for our children and their children. We bypass the waters laden with nitrates and algae blooms. The soils are vital and living, teaming with humic acids, nematodes and earthworms. They embrace and hold carbon lifting it out of our warming atmosphere.
Organic seeds from which our meal sprouts are open source, free for everyone to save and breed. They are not hindered by patents or genetically modified technology. They are often heirloom varieties that can be savored and bred in all manner of ecospheres and bioregions.
This passion for good organic food reignites hope and a sense of purpose. If we focus on the potential that comes from an all-organic Thanksgiving meal, we can achieve a sense of gratitude.
As we turn off our phones and settle into our organic feast, let us be thankful that with each bite we take part in restoring the health of our planet and its people.