Monday, April 12, 2010

What's in a Name?

Have you ever realized while perusing your pantry and refrigerator that the best tasting foods -- and those best for your body -- tend to always have an individuals name attached to it.  For example, my pantry/refrigerator includes:
  • One of my dozen free-range organic eggs is from "Pat & Ginny Rakowski" and the other a bit more genric "Willowcrest Eggs", but both provide their local address and phone.
  • Our 1/2 gallon of maple syrup is from "Ned and Heidi Stoller".
  • Our ground beef, ground sausage, beef roast, hot dogs and turkey drumsticks are from "Nathan Creswick".
  • Our lamb bratwursts and ground lamb say "Pierre & Sharon Schierbeek" or "Jill & Mary".
  • Our vegetables are organically grown by "Anja Mast and Michael VanderBrug".
  • Our apples are from "Kurt, Tom and Scott Wells".
  • Any bread we purchase is from "Casey Lubbers".
  • Our raw Michigan honey is from "Al Haarsma".
  • The fair-traded Peru coffee is hand roasted by Craig Patterson to my specificiations.
  • Even our hand soap is from "Betty".
The better products we buy from national organizations carry the founder's name too such as "Gary Hirshberg" of Stonyfield Farm, "Bob & Charlee Moore" of Bob's Red Mill, and "Drew & Myra Goodman" of Earthbound Farm.

So what's in a name?

First, for us, we purchase directly from the people named above and can get to know them.  This provides a great opportunity to ask questions about how our food was cared for, cultivated and prepared.

Second, there is no "trash" in their food in the form of fillers, additives, preservatives, junk oils, artificial sweeteners, extra sodium, extra flavorings, added water, etc.  And, because they love what they do, they take extra effort to ensure the best nutritional product for our bodies in the form of 100% grass-fed animals and organic growing.

Third, their system of producing is significantly less damaging to the environment and in most cases enhances the environment.

To borrow from a credit card company, "What names are in your pantry/refrigerator?"  If you find a myriad of store brands and the big food companies, you're missing out.  Kudos if you know who made your food and how!

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