I did my weekly shopping, as per usual, at the end of last week. I feel pretty good about the origin and ownership of most of the grocery items I purchase. As I’ve written on numerous occasions, for me, ethicality trumps eco-friendly when they come into conflict. Many of the not so benevolent multi-national companies have jumped on-board the eco-friendly product bandwagon while still doing untold harm to the environment and/or their workers.
There was something that bugged me when I shopped last week, however. I’ve slowly let more processed foods creep into my trolley. Because the ones I buy are reasonably healthy and ethical I’ve let it happen. I don’t really think it’s okay, though. The more I buy that’s processed the more packaging I’m throwing into the rubbish. Even if the packaging is recyclable there is fossil fuel energy used in the process.
I don’t even know why I’ve been doing it. We always have snack appropriate food in the house anyway. It may not involve instant gratification but is that a bad thing? So what if you have to wash a piece of fruit before eating it or cut some cheese to put on crackers? Is it really too much work to make a cheese and tomato toasty? It’s quick and easy to grab a handful of almonds or walnuts, which we usually have in the house. I know a good many of them are also packaged but, to me, they’re necessary food items. I’ve been buying rice snacks and banana chips. Goodness knows, we’ve got fresh bananas!
In the ideal world where I’m drowning in free time I’d have far fewer items and do much more cooking. I’d bake my own bread, crackers, wraps and rolls. I’d do my own pasta and muesli. I’d spend hours reducing kilos of tomatoes into passatta. For now, however, they’re some of my staples. That’s enough. No need for processed snacks.