One of our neighbors who works in the Spanish agriculture business was telling us, in passing conversation one day, about the steroidal products that are used nowadays in the produce industry. It was interesting to hear that one of the main uses for such products was the production of crops which simply look good. She explained, for example, how unnatural it turns out to be, that each piece of a given fruit or vegetable happens to grow to precisely the same shape and size as all the others.
Skip ahead a few weeks, and we were reminded of this conversation when we received the first delivery from a new service we’ve subscribed to. A group of local organic farmers have organized themselves into a cooperative, and for about 20 Euros per week, will deliver a large box full of locally grown seasonal fruits and vegetables to your door each Tuesday.
The above photo illustrates how different organically grown, untreated carrots can turn out!
When we moved into our current house we started a small square foot garden. We were pretty surprised as well at how the carrots came out. Picture from our 2007 harvest: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jarofcookes/2799938653/
The other food (onions, lettuce, tomatoes, and some other stuff) came out pretty standard though.
We hadn’t heard that they actually did anything to make carrots all pretty like (scary). Our assumption was that they took these ugly ones and chopped em up into the pre-washed baby carrots.