It´s Sunday morning and the organic markets are setting out their stalls once again. The opportunity to stock up on the best locally produced organic fruit and vegetables is here, and this brings a great feeling of positivity and gratitude as we take one further step to normality. The difference here today is that with social-distancing in place, we must wait out turn in order to be served, and must not touch the vegetables on display. This means that I have come away with significantly less than I used to. Normally, the colours and smells of the freshly picked aray of produce are so vibrant that it is hard not to react like a kid in a sweet shop, eating everything hungrily with your eyes, before realising that you have probably spent mre than you needed to. However, that in itself is of no consequence. The vegetables from the organic market have a hugely different shelf life to those sourced through other outlets.
This produce has not been picked and packaged and transported excessively, and so they come to our kitchens with much less delay. Additionally, these edible delights are not treated with chemicals, or grown in a manner to ensure their size or appearance. They are not bloated with hormones or plumped up with wáter. And they are still carrying traces of the soil in which they have grown, a soil that is rich in selenium. Vegetarians and vegans are often warned to be aware of their levels of vitamin B12, a vitamin that is derived from animal products. But fruits that are picked directly from the trees, and vegetable that are pulled directly from the ground carry far higher nutritional value having not been interfered with within an inch of their lives!
Organic produce is known to carry traces of B12 by the very nature of the environment in which it has been grown. B12 is found to some extent in soil and plants, and is actually synthesized by certain bacteria and archaea. These trace sources are not deemed to be substantial in terms of the need for the vitamin, and a supplement should often be considered. But it is another excellent reason to make sure that your food is straight out of the ground and into your body with as little interference as possibe!