We look at whether organic vegetables really better than regular vegetables, and where you can get organic vegetables in Jakarta.
For those of us who want to live a healthier lifestyle, one of the ways we do so is by putting loads of vegetables on our plate. The colourful leaves and roots fulfil our daily nutrient intake. However, not all vegetables are the same. Organic and non-organic vegetables, that is.
Organic vegetables cost more than regular vegetables. So we often wonder, are organic vegetables really better than non-organic vegetables? Or is this just a marketing gimmick to charge more for vegetables?
What is Behind Organic
First of all, what does the term ‘organic’ mean? For food produce to be labelled organic, they have to meet specific requirements. These include using seeds that have not been bioengineered, otherwise known as GMO; safe soil that has not been modified; farmers do not use synthetic pesticides, petroleum-based fertilisers or sewage sludge fertilisers, and many more stringent requirements. When grown according to these requirements, vegetables can be labelled as organic, and they are less toxic as compared to regular vegetables.
However, growing vegetables organically can be time consuming as the vegetables are allowed to grow naturally to their maturity, rather than hurried along by artificial fertilisers. This also means that the frequency of harvesting is longer, and the yield amount is less. These factors explain why organic vegetables are pricier than regular vegetables.
Exploding with Nutrients
A study in 2002 discovered that organically grown oranges contained 30 per cent more vitamin C than regularly grown ones. One of the possible reasons cited for this was that conventionally grown orange crops are fed nitrogen fertilisers, which increase the intake of water that dilutes the orange. As such, the nutritional value of regular oranges decrease even as their size increases.
In comparison, fruit and vegetable that are grown organically are not artificially boosted in size, presentation or colour. Yet they pack higher nutritional value, enzymes and antioxidants. All these work together for boosting the body’s immune system, slowing down ageing, and could possibly help destroy cancer-causing carcinogenic agents in the body.
The great thing about organic vegetables is that they are packed with natural goodness and nutrients. There is nothing in the form of chemical or synthetic ingredients in them. Sometimes, organic vegetables are crunchier and taste better than regular vegetables too.
The other goodness of organic vegetables is that they are also good for the earth. By eating organic vegetables, you will help the environment to become greener. By demanding more organic vegetables, you are sending a sign that you would like vegetable farms to stop using synthetic chemical substances on your greens. The use of natural fertilisers such as animal manure do not leave chemical residues in the soil or vegetable. Animal manure is also easier for the soil to decompost, thus adding to environmental conservation efforts.
Organic Vegetables in Jakarta
In Jakarta, many supermarkets offer organic vegetables. These include Ranch Market, Grand Lucky, The FoodHall, and Kem Chiks. Before you buy organic vegetables, be sure to read all labels before making a purchase; not all natural products are organic, and some products that claim to be organic may not truly be.The best way to know whether the vegetables are organic is to visit the farm and speak with the vegetable farmers.