Friday, May 22, 2015

Sweet potatoes and pesticides, complaints about Clayton's beef

Natural sugar oozing from organic sweet potatoes I baked at home.


In the May 2015 issue of Consumer Reports, you can find a chart showing the risk of pesticide exposure from eating 48 fresh conventional fruits and vegetables from 14 different countries.

"We recommend buying organic for any produce-country combination in the medium or higher risk categories," the editors say.

"We found that all organic produce falls into the low- or very low-risk categories," the magazine reports.

Still, a footnote says, "Our analysis is based on the risk to a 3-and-a-half-year-old child, estimated to weigh 35.2 pounds."

Sweet potatoes -- one of the key bread substitutes I rely on to maintain my weight loss -- are listed in the high-risk category, and the magazine says:

"Beware of conventional," if the sweet potatoes are from the United States.

But I will continue to buy conventional and occasionally organic sweet potatoes, because Consumer Reports and other experts say their N0. 1 rule is to eat more produce.

"Getting plenty of fruits and vegetables -- even if you can't obtain organic -- takes precedence when it comes to your health," the magazine states.

Consumer Reports leads all general-interest publications, including newspapers, in reporting on pesticide use, antibiotics in meat and poultry, and other important food issues.

A 3-pound bag of organic sweet potatoes, top, at the ShopRite in Paramus goes on sale occasionally for $4.99. On Tuesday, I bought a bag at the regular price of $5.99, but it tipped the scale at nearly 4 pounds, below.

A 3-pound bag of conventional sweet potatoes at ShopRite is $2.99, but often weighs 3.5 pounds or more. Trader Joe's on Route 17 in Paramus sells organic and conventional sweet potatoes at lower prices than ShopRite.
A 3-pound bag of Southern's 10 in 1 Sweet Potatoes is a favorite purchase at the Paramus ShopRite. Even though these are conventionally grown, they are triple washed, which would reduce our exposure to any pesticide residue.

A large, seedless watermelon from Florida was $6.99 at the Paramus ShopRite, a discount of $1. No need to thump. Pick the biggest and heaviest you can find.

Clayton's Organic Ground Beef from Australia in the refrigerated case of the ShopRite, 224 Route 4 east, Paramus.

Clayton's Organic Beef

Here is a comment I received in February from a reader who buys Clayton's Organic Ground Beef from Australia at the ShopRite, at 668 Route 70, Brick, a town on the Jersey shore:

"I've been buying Clayton ground beef at Shop-Rite for several years now, at least one-pack per week and we love it. It's the best ground beef I've have ever had. 
"But, the past 2 months I've noticed the Clayton ground beef is not as lean as usual and I don't blame Clayton.
"Upon closer inspection I've noticed that it appears that Shop-Rite (Bricktown - Rt 70) is re-packing the date-stamped vacuum-sealed Clayton ground meat and adding filler if the meat is near the expiration date. I think maybe they are adding fresh ground beef of low quality. 
"All I know is that it looks like the packages are being tampered with and resealed by the Butcher Dept., at least at this particular Shop-Rite."

Then, on May 18, another reader said:
"I read the above post and agree the Clayton ground beef at the RT 70 Brick Town Shop-Rite does not taste the same as the the Clayton ground beef purchased at other Shop-Rite stores.
"Their steaks taste the same, they are consistent and don't vary from store to store, but imo [in my opinion], not the ground beef.
"Doesn't taste as fresh and doesn't have the WOW factor even though the expiration date is almost one month out.
"IMO, something's not right. 
"Maybe a SR Representative could investigate by comparing the ground beef from several different stores (visually inspect and compare & cook and taste test it) and see for themselves without informing the meat dept management or employees."

I called Wakefern Food Corp., a cooperative composed of 50 member companies that own and operate supermarkets under the ShopRite banner. 

A ShopRite spokeswoman said:
"All Clayton's Organic Beef is vacuum sealed - and is not resealable - to ensure freshness and to protect the integrity of the product. We take these complaints very seriously and would ask any customer who feels that they have purchased a product that does not meet their expectations to let us know via our Customer Care Center at 1-800-ShopRite. 
She also addressed the "distinctly different" taste of Clayton's Organic Ground Beef, compared to other beef, noting that Australian cattle are free range, grass fed and grain finished.

Depending on the time of year and "growth cycle of the grass," the taste of the beef can differ, she said.

If you buy three packages of Clayton's Organic Ground Beef at the Paramus ShopRite this week, you'll save $1.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please try to stay on topic.