As you know, I’m a 2014 David Suzuki’s Queen of Green Coach, with 5 families under my charge. Module 1 was all about waste reduction, and Module 2 is about food!
Compared to the Waste module, I feel like our family has a lot less to be proud about in terms of our eating habits.
Here’s what I think our family is already doing well in terms of “green” eating:
- I’ve been a lacto-ovo-pescatarian for many years (I eat milk products, eggs and seafood), and by default, my husband and son eat very little meat;
- We make most of our own meals with fresh ingredients;
- We buy in season produce most of the time (though bananas, sadly, will never be in season in Quebec);
- We store most food in glass containers and don’t microwave in plastic;
- We meal plan almost religiously, and have close to zero food wastage;
- We are conscious of GMOs and actively seeking brands that do not contain them;
- We pack litter-less lunches;
- We buy only Fair Trade coffee;
- We buy some organic products (always milk, but other produce depending on price and availability).
The Queen of Green Module proposes three categories for improving your FOODprint: How you shop; how you cook and growing you own food. Here are the goals I am setting for our family: (They’re a bit tricky to breakdown into immediate, short and long term, so I’m just listing them.)
Do more from scratch: I made yogurt once last year, and it was easy and turned out great. Then I got lazy. Time to do it again! (I made a batch today, I’ll be writing a blog post about it soon.) I can make granola to put on yogurt, apple sauce, granola bars and all sorts of sweet treats, but I need this Coaching challenge to really get my butt in gear and stop buying these easy-to-make items in store. My husband has been making his pizza dough from scratch for a while now, which has replaced ready-made crust.
Find a source for happy meat: I am a vegetarian, but I do like to feed my boys meat sometimes. I want to figure where to get happy meat: meat that is ethically and sustainably produced and is as close to us as possible. Since we eat so little meat, the extra cost isn’t a big deal. My father-in-law raises rabbits and he does some hunting. The meat in the picture is deer that my husband will be cooking up soon. (To me, hunted meat is the “happiest,” but that’s for another blog post.)
Can the cans: Yucky stuff (BPA) can leach from cans into our foods, and then into our bodies. I am switching to buying dried beans (which means I have to plan ahead and soak them), more frozen vegetables (I wish our freezer was bigger), and hoping to find the time to can more of my own produce this summer.
Cast out the remaining Teflon: In the back of my mind, I know non-stick cookware is bad, but I’ve been sticking my head in the sand. We’ve got one small cast-iron pan and one ginormous one (I can barely lift it), so I need to find us a middle-sized one to fully replace the skillet we use most often.
Other things on my FOODprint to-do list:
Learn more about the Sea Choices Coalition and how to choose sustainable types of fish;
Learn about the Dirty Dozen and The Clean Fifteen (pesticides used on produce);
Learn to can my own fruits and vegetables. (I’ve made jam before, but I would really love to can peaches and make tomato sauce);
Decode all the of the labels on eggs to make sure I’m buying eggs from happy chickens when I’m not getting them straight from Grandpapa’s farm.
Are you going to tag along in Module 2? How big is your family’s FOODprint?