by Christine Muller
Why should we eat strawberries, why now, and what do we need to be careful about when purchasing them?
1. Strawberries are delicious.
2. Strawberries are nutritious; they contain many important elements our bodies need such as vitamin C, potassium, iron, fiber, and antioxidants.
3. Strawberries are just beautiful.
Unfortunately, strawberries are also loaded with agricultural chemicals—herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides. In fact, they are considered to be the most contaminated fresh produce. These chemicals are very harmful to human health, especially for children.
So, what can we do?
Buy organic strawberries! Organic produce is generally more expensive, but by foregoing a steak purchase, you can still save money, and have a double win—for your health and for the environment.
June is strawberry season in many areas. Strawberries are not only more affordable now, they also taste better! Have you ever eaten a strawberry in December? It looks like a strawberry, but it either has no taste or a chemical taste.
If you can, try to buy local strawberries. Strawberries from local farms may contain less toxins than those from big agricultural companies. Moreover, you support local agriculture which is critically important for future food security.
If offered in your area, the best choice is to pick strawberries yourself at a local organic farm. Bring your children or friends with you. It is a healthy, educational, and fun family and community-building activity!
For more information:
EWG’s 2023 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce by EWG (Environmental Working Group) Science Team, March 2023
Dirty Dozen 2022: Produce with the most and least pesticides by Sandee LaMotte, CNN Health, April 7, 2022
Living Responsibly: Why Eat Organic? WI Sustainable Living Tip for April 2018