Choosing Vegetables in China

By jess

Over lunch one day last week, a colleague of mine who grew up in China brought up an interesting observation she had made about how people select vegetables while shopping in China compared to the US. - Many folks in China prefer vegetables with inset holes. My first reaction was eww... Why would you want the bugs? But she sagely pointed out that there are far fewer health and safety regulations in China and the only way to really know if the food you are buying isn't doused in pesticides is if insects have been able to nibble on it.

Here in the US, I think we have a false sense of security when it comes to our food. A lot nasty chemicals get used in traditional agriculture in the US. Even organic foods contain a certain level of pesticides. Of course we can't feed the world's massive and continually growing human population without some level of pesticide use, so I don't know that the solution is.

But personally I will do two things. First this summer, I'm going to try to only eat salad greens that I've grown pesticide free myself. Second, while shopping I'm going to start looking for evidence of insects in my produce.