Well I have been talking about the financial benefits of vegetable gardening for quite some time now and looks like US News and World Report agrees with me. They have given “Home Gardening” the number one winner of the recession.
They tout statistics such as Park Seeds and Burpee showing 20-25% sales growths and the Burpee research that found $50 worth of seeds and fertilizer can yield $1,250 worth or produce. I must say 2500% is a pretty good return on investment, especially in today’s economy.
“University of Texas, Austin. Davis claims the average vegetable found in today’s supermarket is anywhere from 5% to 40% lower in minerals (including magnesium, iron, calcium and zinc) than those harvested just 50 years ago.”
Not only are those vegetables you been eating at the grocery store less tasty, but may be getting marginal nutritional value. They discuss some of the potential factors in this including use for synthetic fertilizer and the desire to achieve higher yield during a shorter timetable, unfortunately the poor plants do not have time to absorb the beneficial minerals (as do we)
This article is timely with my Chemistry of Gardening — What nutrients do plants need? post. If you have sufficient primary macronutrients (NPK) which is the primary contents on synthetic fertilizer you can still have great yields and fast growing plants but quality of plants are reduced. What the problem appears to me, is the secondary macronutrients are not being supplemented (magnesium, iron, calcium and zinc) which is causing the nutrient/taste deficiency. Organic methods natural provide these nutrients by the addition of organic matter to the soil.
I am cheap and organic vegetables are expensive, this is definitely a case of you get what you pay for. Hope is still here you can easily grow your own organic vegetables at home. If you still think growing your own vegetables is a bad idea here are a list of benefits from buying at the grocery store:
- Continue to rise in cost so you won’t have to worry what to do with your extra money
- No confusion with the small variety available (transport well)
- They don’t taste as good, so no guilt in enjoying eating your veggies
- Less of those pesky minerals for your body to absorb
- Opportunity of getting a trip to the ER after picking up salmonella
In all seriousness this is a scary development where people could be malnourished even with a decent supply of fruits and vegetables.