Tuesday, September 18, 2007

How Do You Like Them Apples?

Did you know that China is the world's biggest apple grower? I had no idea. I am such an ignoramus; I didn't even know China grew apples until this weekend.

Spencer has been having a hard time finishing his lunch at school. If you know him, you would know that he is most likely talking when he should be eating. Nevertheless, he is not eating the fruit I pack. No really, it's not that he is a first grader and doesn't want to eat fruit - he loves fruit and, on average, eats 2 apples a day. Anyway, I went to Whole Foods because I thought they might have some healthy fruit leather or something that he could finish more quickly. I picked up a bag of dried apples with no added sulfates, or sugar. Perfect right? Well, we opened them up to give them a try and they were really good. Sam tried them and looked at the package to see if they were just apples - yep, they were just apples, but apples that come from China (maybe). As you can see this label is less than helpful:
Product of China, U.S.A. - hunh?

So, now I am wondering about all of the apples we eat. What about the apples in the apple sauce and apple juice? What about all of those products out there that contain apple juice concentrate? When the manufacturer says produced in the USA does that mean it was just pureed in the USA, or is everything from the USA? I think I would like to know. Manufacturers must put a list of ingredients on their products, why not put where the ingredients are from? Now, I am not going to know if the growing practices in Turkey differ from those in China, but I then have the ability to choose and I may just keep shopping.

Going back to the apples that we did buy from China - should I be concerned? I have nothing against China (or their apples), but what I am against is toys with lead in them, pet food that kills our animals and toothpaste with antifreeze in it.

So, I am wondering what you think - do you care where your food is from? Am I nuts, or do you have my back? I set up a poll in the right column (under the cakes), so if you have a second I'm curious to know what you think. No, not about my sanity - although, maybe it should be...

PS I wrote this yesterday and today Dole is recalling bagged salad. I'm not sure I want to eat food from the US either.


sugarcreekstuff said...

I love Chineese people, chineese food and chineese checkers too, but I am also worried about imported food. I heard that 50% of our imported food comes from China. Sorry if I made you worry more. I try to grow what I can, vist local farmers and buy local meats(contact your local 4-H to see who might near you). Sadly this country is still using pesticides so we can have perfect looking produce. Our attitudes need to change, maybe others will too.

SegoLily said...

Maybe I'm naive about the whole import/export business (undoubtebly I am), but I would just prefer to buy apples made in the U.S. since we do grow them here. I see no reason why the food must travel so far all the while emitting extra amounts of carbon dixoxide. Aside from that, buying local when available keeps our towns thriving. If it's something we grow here in the U.S., that's where I want it from.

Mrs. Furious said...

I actually did know this. I got all crazy about the China - lead stuff not that long ago. Pretty much everything you consume has stuff going through China. Citric Acid, which I'm sure you know is in just about everything, is almost exclusively produced in China.
ugghh... what to do? Obviously if you are buying whole apples you can buy local or at least possibly continental if you want organic. But when it comes to shelf stable products I think you are going to have a hard time eliminating the China factor.

Julie said...

Guess who buys more apples than any other business?? McDonalds - ever since their debut of Apple Salad!