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Do we put pesticides on our corn?

August 23, 2010

Daniel and I were at the farmers market early this past weekend because there was also a flea market set up in the park and we were hunting for treasures.

While we were in line to buy some delicious Jersey corn, I noticed the farmer’s son, who seemed to be about 12. He was concentrating hard on something, and when his dad walked over he blurted out, “Do we put pesticides on our corn, dad?” Followed by the “Why?” and the “How?” of course!

It was really cool that I got to witness the moment when this kid, who must know a whole lot about farming already, came to understand that some farmers do things differently than his father does them. Their conversation was admirable, because, though the father had to explain in front of a lot of organic-loving customers why he does use pesticides, it was had with respect for the lad’s right to know all sides of an issue and make up his own mind about right and wrong. (In this case, the farmer explained to his son that he didn’t think they could make a profit if they didn’t kill the worms that liked their corn.)

Another conversation that I got to listen in on involved a little girl of about 6 or 7. She held up a small green tomato for her mom, who was already paying for the veggies she wanted to buy. The little girl said “Mom let’s get this one too.” The mom I think was in a hurry and quickly said no without looking down. So the little girl asked again if she could have it. The mom this time explained, “No, we can’t get it; I don’t know what to do with a green tomato!” The girl looked down at the tomato, then back up at her mom with the most puzzled look on her face, and quickly and matter of factly said, “I’m gonna play with it!” in the most “DUH” way possible!

It seemed like an appropriate use to me!

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