Food for Thought: Almost half of Americans seek organics

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Nevit Dilmen [CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

Tip of the Week

A little less than half — 45 percent — of Americans actively try and include organic foods in their diet but 15 percent go out of their way to avoid them, according to a new Gallup poll. The remaining 38 percent indicated they “don’t think either way.”

Active interest in an organic diet is highest in the West, where 54 percent of respondents placed an importance on their inclusion. The East had the lowest interest, where only 39 percent actively try and include organic foods, while 18 percent intentionally avoid them.

Younger respondents are more likely to seek organics, with 53 percent of those aged 18-29 indicating they are of active importance. Older respondents are only slightly more likely to go out of their way to avoid organics, but are much more likely not to give the matter much thought at all. While 32 percent of the 18- to 29-year-old age group said they are not likely to “think either way,” almost half — 44 percent — of respondents aged 65 or older made that selection.

Household income was also a factor in organic food choices, with 24 percent of those with a household income of $30,000 per year or less actively avoiding organic foods, as compared with only 11 percent of households with an annual income of $75,000 or more. One possible reason for the discrepancy is higher cost, with organic foods typically costing 20 percent to 100 percent more than their non-organic counterparts.

Number to Know

92: The percentage of American-grown lemons that come from the state of California, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Easy Recipe

Quick And Easy Preserved Lemons


6 small lemons, scrubbed

2/3 cup kosher salt

1 cup fresh lemon juice (from about 5 large lemons)


1. Wash the lemons, place them in a saucepan, and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes, or until the rinds have begun to soften.

2. Drain and dry the lemons well and cut each into 8 wedges. In a bowl, toss the wedges with the salt and transfer to a large glass jar. Add the lemon juice and cover with a tight-fitting glass lid or plastic-coated lid.

3. Let the lemons stand at room temperature 5 days, shaking the jar each day to redistribute the salt and juice. Store the lemons, covered, in the refrigerator for up to six months.

— Cookthink

Food Quiz

Which state produces more citrus fruit: California or Florida?

Answer below.

Wise to the Word

Meyer lemon: A fruit believed to be a hybrid between a lemon and a mandarin or orange. Meyer lemons tend to be much sweeter than regular lemons and have a complex citrus taste that comes from their mandarin/orange lineage.

— Cookthink

The Dish On...

“Sweet: Our Best Cupcakes, Cookies, Candy, and More,” by the editors of Food Network Magazine

Food Network Magazine editors have picked their all-time favorite treats and put them into one book. You’ll find over-the-top brownies, super fun cupcakes, show-off layer cakes, one-of-a-kind cookies and much more. You don’t need to be an experienced baker to get started. Every dessert in this book is easy to follow—and totally foolproof.

— Amazon

Food Quiz answer

Florida produces about 63 percent of American citrus fruit, with California coming in second with about 34 percent. Arizona and Texas combine for the remaining 3 percent.