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09 July, 2005

Close encounters of the turnip kind

Tiny, often irregularly-shaped Egyptian nectarines huddle together in one half of the fruit display, a sad contrast to their neighbours: vast, firm, shiny immaculate American nectarines - four times the size and price - in a perfect pyramid formation.

Opposite, small European apples, randomly sized and coloured, lie in a windfallen, crestfallen heap. Adjacent is a platoon of American apples, well ordered into straight military rows: huge, round and unreal looking.

The gleaming American vegetables are generally twice the price but half the flavour of their less comely overseas cousins. Longer distance transportation and refrigeration can take some of the blame, but not all. GM foods seem to lack the sharp, wild flavours of more natural fruit. Compare a Cox's Orange Pippin picked straight from the tree in a country orchard to a massive, bland, Frankenfarmed apple of uniform roundness and colour. Perhaps a milder flavour suits the transatlantic palate, but European tastebuds demand more tang and bite. (France and their hellish Golden "Delicious" excepted).

It is no wonder the poor aliens in War of the Worlds met such a sorry fate. If only they had chosen an organic market garden in Cornwall for global domination:

"The aliens' machines were invulnerable to our weapons and technology. But the moment the aliens started breathing our air, drinking our water and eating our food, they were finished."

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8 Comments:

Anonymous Pasha said...

Be grateful that you have the privilege of choice between organic and the "Frankenfood" to which you refer.

I doubt you'd see the starving people in Sierra Leone complain about hi-yield GMO fruit not tasting as "sharp".

10 July, 2005 03:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pasha's comment is inspiring.

In fact it is so inspiring that tomorrow I'm going to sell my computer and give the money to less fortunate people in Sierra Leone. At least then I won't feel so guilty about wasting my time replying to pretentious, self-righteous wanking comments about starving people on utterly unrelated blog entries.

10 July, 2005 04:33  
Blogger Storm in a Teacup said...

Oranges in the US are absolutely void of flavor, and often have the consistency of a fruit that's been dried. But they are huge have no seeds, which I think we're supposed to be thrilled about.

By the way, Pasha, in 2002, Zambia became the first of many African nations to categorically reject the US's donation of GM food, calling it "poison."

Bad taste aside, who really wants to put it in their body?

10 July, 2005 04:48  
Blogger Brn said...

I agree with pasha, I'm glad that I have the choice amoung various types of food.

And storm, while I respect the right of Zambia and other African countries to reject food for whatever reasons they want, do you really want to hold up Zambia as your exemplar?

10 July, 2005 05:30  
Blogger Dave Banana said...

I really enjoy your blog and check it daily - would you add my fairly recent stab at this to your links?

http://dubaithoughts.blogspot.com/

10 July, 2005 13:35  
Anonymous Pasha said...

anonymous,
First of all, don't get upset. This is a chat board, not a pissing contest.

Secondly, you're missing the point. I'm not advocating a total guilt-free existance. What I'm saying is that "green" lobbying groups, under the mistaken guise of saving the world from GM food, end up convincing countries like Zambia that their batch of seeds are "poisonous", when the reality is that GM foods are their best hope for food production.

10 July, 2005 15:19  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Resistance is futile. You will be mechanically recovered!

19 July, 2005 20:01  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Time for a little reality, If you are looking for organic foods you definately do not want to buy Egyptian produce. Egypt permits the use of pesticides and fertilsers that are banned in the EU and other western nations, the irregular shaped fruit and vegetables from that country cannot not be attributed to nature. In nature there is not such a high percentage of mutant shapes as one sees overall in Egyptian produce.

27 July, 2005 06:06  

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