>>Sorry to open a can of worms (and feel free to ignore the question if it’s too complicated)– what is the organic situation in Israel? My friends in Jerusalem subscribe to an organic CSA for weekly produce delivery, do you have any options like that up north?<<
And from someone else a few days ago:
>> Is organic produce available and how expensive is it? We shop here at Trader Joe’s where the organic produce is relatively reasonable.
We get our natural household products without the sulfates, parabens, phalates, etc. from places like Whole Foods. Are such products available over there? Are they exorbitantly priced?
I am wondering if dairy products are healthier over there. (Does the Israeli government allow bovine growth hormone to be used?) My kids don’t drink milk (only rice milk) b/c of the toxicity. Can you get raw milk there any easier than over here?
In general, from my research over the past year and a half on all health fronts, it seems that our wonderful U.S. government is literally the worst in the world when it comes to protecting the health of its citizens. Whether it’s the food industry, the pharmaceutical industry, or the cancer industry, healthful information is deliberately hidden from the public, while any and all toxic substances are allowed to pass, as long as it will be profitable for them. I know that the Israelis in government are no saints but the question is, are they any better than the U.S.? I hear they are trying to get a law passed now over here to somehow shut down all health related websites so that we will no longer have any way of accessing info on health.<<
Organics – as I’ve written before, my budget unfortunately doesn’t have room for the extra cost of organics. In the past I’ve bought them when I could find them at a comparable price (eg salvage/discount stores). The only vegetables that we eat that I’m sure are organic are the things I harvest myself from local vegetation/fruit trees. So I haven’t yet found a local source because I haven’t looked.
However, I have seen notices of people posting about organic produce in various communities, and am sure this isn’t something that is difficult to do, as long as you have the budget for it.
Natural health products – I’m not sure what you use in the US. I use baking soda and vinegar for just about everything, and don’t buy any ‘green’ products. I found a place here where I was able to buy a 50 lb sack of baking soda, which was great since the teeny tiny containers they sell here are something like 40x the bulk price. I’ve been making my own laundry detergent for quite a while, but since all of the necessary ingredients aren’t available for purchase locally, have been buying the regular detergent and sometimes I add baking soda for an added boost. We use baking soda for toothbrushing and deodorant (works better than anything else I’ve ever tried!) and use regular shampoo without artificial colors added. There are health stores where overpriced ‘green’ products are sold, just like in the US – pretty much anything you would want here, I think you can find. There seems to be a lot of interest in the alternative health realm; to me it seems like more interest and openness than the US.
Raw milk – someone told me about raw cow milk, but it seems much easier to find raw goat milk. (Which is pretty understandable, being that this country is so tiny and cows take up much more space than goats.) I’ve been in touch with a couple of people about this and found sources about a 40 minute drive away, but not having a car makes this very difficult to arrange, particularly since those raising goats are usually living in areas with irregular bus transportation. It’s not realistic for us to take a bus to get the milk, due to cost and difficulty in bringing home an adequate amount for our family. The other option is renting a car for the day to get the milk, which also makes the cost shoot up (not to mention gas that costs $8 a gallon!). So we’ve pretty much cut out dairy, and the answer to how healthy the regular milk sold in the store is, I don’t know.
So basically these are lots of questions I’d also like more details on but don’t know the answers to. However, I’m sure some of my readers do, so please share relevant details, suggestions, and contact information for people in the comments!
(This post is part of Real Food Wednesdays.)