Organic: Then and Now

I’ve been wondering what’s the big deal about organic foods and products when we had so much of them during the 80’s.

My grandmother had native chickens that provided us with brown eggs for breakfast. She gave us a hen and a rooster that became the ancestors of our brood. Our chicken supplied us with eggs for breakfast. The hassle was, it was like Easter Sunday everyday because some of them had the habit of laying eggs just anywhere! One time, my classmate saw me picking some eggs and innocently asked, “You don’t buy eggs from the grocery?” Don’t get me started about how life was in the 80’s because the grocery that she mentioned about was no Savemore but a little grocery near the Balanga Water District.

There was also a time when tomatoes and snow cabbages were harvested straight from the garden plot because our teachers required us to grow our own vegetables. Tea time meant boiling some dried leaves from the following trees: guava, banana, mango, pandan, alagao and avocado. Now, my tea time is getting a pack of Lipton from the box.We had bottles of fresh carabao milk every Saturday; powdered milk was considered expensive. We had powdered corns for snack and sugarcane for dessert. We climbed trees to pick fruits, picked sampaguita flowers to make a potpourri, used alum as deodorant and coconut oil as hair conditioner.

Looking back, I equated backyard farming to being penniless because instead of buying from the market, there we were cultivating soil. If not for the grades, we wouldn’t do that. Looking back when most of what I mentioned above were still free, I felt that there was a better way of doing or gettting things. I grew up in the age of commercialism when using a sanitary pad was more practical than a cloth pad. I grew up watching children eating cornflakes and other cereals. I salivated over imported chocolates because they were only available whenever a relative would come home from abroad. I asked my mother to buy an air-freshener because my sampaguita potpourri was too old-fashioned. I started using commercial deodorants when I was a teenager because that was what my classmates did and I didn’t want to feel left-out. My first hair conditioner was a green Cream Silk because coconut oil smelled funny. In short, I shied away from anything organic because I was too brainwashed about commercialism and being “in.”

Three decades later, organic is back and the concept is even supported by celebrities and famous personalities. Me as a mature person now realize that what we were doing in the 80’s was on the right track until commercialism distracted us from it. Well, promoting organic maybe another marketing ploy unless a person resorts to growing his own food. The important thing now is some people are campaigning about a healthy alternative to the foods that our current market is offering.

Three decades ago, organic was uncool, unsophisticated and backward. Now, organic means embracing the healthy lifestyle. To some extent, it is even a status symbol. 😉