Monday, July 28, 2008

organic carrots from queensland

earlier this month my juicing carrots were coming from tassie. i picked up a bag today from Ripe and discovered it had travelled all the way from queensland. none of this is good for the food miles, but i must say i was glad to find information about the grower online. Bauer's organic farm is a family interest, farmed by one of the pioneers of the organic industry. the carrots taste good, despite having travelled so far, and they are definitely fresh. i enjoyed seeing such comprehensive and detailed information on the website, including photos of carrot growing and harvesting. i love knowing where my food is coming from.
it mentions on the site that these carrots are hand-weeded. this makes them more expensive as the farm hires a lot of seasonal workers to do this. however it also helps create local employment. it is heartening too to know that they grow a mulch crop in between plantings, giving the ground a rest and time to replenish. it shows in the quality of the carrots. yum. great juice.

organic expo, sydney

so i didn't get to attend the organic expo this year, but heard about it from yeshi. sounds like it was similar to previous years. always a lot of chocolate exhibits (and tastings) and a lot of processed organic foods. i was excited to hear that someone is launching a raw cracker product. yeshi thinks the crackers i make taste better. now that's something to think about.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

no boredom on this board

i've been largely absent from this online life for a while. juggling a number of projects, of which the co-op is one.
this week i've been in katoomba occupying my role as a Director of the Blue Mountains Food Co-op. recall in my previous post that, as the food fight festered on (so to speak), we eventually saw the resignation of the previous Board. It's been messy, but that is life. It has been uncomfortable, as many of us did not want to see it happen this way. We are a Co-operative, for goodness sake.

As one of the caretaker directors it has been a delight to be a part of supporting the Co-op in healing and rebuilding trust. I see a real opportunity to move out of a dark place and into seeing the Co-op flourish. the hard stuff is not yet over however, and there are still more conversations to be had. This is a small and strongly interconnected community and many of the people involved in the events of the past few months are also friends, people that have known each other for many years.

And, i am discovering, these people have long memories. yesterday i received a post on this blog from an ex-worker at the Co-op. Someone who remembers me from the time i sat on the board 5 years ago. They are questioning the behaviours of that board in relation to a couple of decisions made at that time. i would like to respond. but i won't be publishing the post, as i would prefer to have that conversation offline. so if you are willing to enter into dialogue, i have an open door - call me, email me, contact me through the co-op. you know how to find me. there is nothing to be afraid of, but our own shadow. as HH Dalai Lama said, i am a human being just like you.

Friday, July 11, 2008

learning about agave nectar

today donna and i visited scott fry and his team at loving earth. in a small warehouse, tucked away on a quiet street in coburg we discovered the raw chocolate dream. more about chocolate later, but right now i am considering the question of agave nectar (or syrup).

is it raw? scott explained that when the nectar is extracted from the agave cactus, heat processing is used. so agave is not 100% raw.
the agave cactus is grown in mexico and loving earth source it from farmers who harvest the syrup from the plant grown in the wild (wildcrafted). however, not all agave syrup comes from wild plants as some agave is grown commercially, and much of the commercially produced crop is used for making tequila.

here's more information about agave from the
living earth site.

now this is confusing, as i found a post on the veg society discussion board, where someone has contacted spiral foods (who also sell agave nectar) and claims to have confirmed that the agave sold by spiral is raw. is there another processing method? the story continues.

in the meanwhile, i guess i shall have to reconsider whether to continue using it as a sweetener. i love the taste, though as my palate becomes more attuned i find i need less and less sweetener. fruit on it's own is sweet enough.