Week 6: GEC In Chicago

This past week we traveled to Chicago to visit Heinens grocery stores. One question that came up a lot from customers is whether or not we are organic. NatureFresh has a line of organic bell peppers, but the majority of their growing is conventional. However, we are able to say that we are very close to organic in our practices. Basically, we grow in coco fiber instead of soil (soil is required for organic farming), but we can use Integrated Pest Management to avoid spraying pesticides. In Chicago, not unlike other areas, I have met people who say that they only buy organic produce, however after hearing about how we grow, they say that they wouldn’t mind buying conventional tomatoes and peppers as long as they came from NatureFresh. I don’t always realize what kind of affect I can have on the customers I interact with until I hear things like that. Regardless of opinion when it comes to organic or conventional farming, I think it is important for everyone to understand where their food is coming from and what it takes to get it to the store and that is exactly what I am able to do. When the days are long and tiring, it is encouraging to know that I have been able to make an impact with at least a few people.



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