Photo by Miliquin
A few months ago we reported that the European Commission (a.k.a the parliament of Europe and arbiter of standards), was discussing the possibilities of scrapping the current strict standards of some 26 varieties of fruits and vegetables in the marketplace, including melons, apricots, carrots, peas, and onions.
What are these current standards? You know all those interesting, comical, funky looking, and sometimes even anatomically correct fruits and vegetables we see pop out of our own organically grown gardens, or local farmers markets.
Well, these ugly looking fruits and vegetables have been weeded out of European grocers shelves with only the best looking and most colorful studs being given the right to be sold for human consumption. All other rejects were snatched out of the crowd and carted off to the island of unwanted fruits and veggies, where they would live out their days in denial, tears, and Xanax.Not all European countries were against allowing the ugly produce into the marketplace, but France, Spain, and Italy were among the 16 of the 27 representing nations who expressed opposition to the abolition of the produce standards. Strangely, their greatest concern was that a national standard for produce may eventually occur if they approved such a change..
Thanks to a little help from the tanked economy and rising worldwide marketplace prices, they finally settled on a compromise that would keep the old standards for 10 discriminated members of the produce family. These included lettuce, tomatoes, apples, pears, peaches, strawberries, kiwi, and citrus fruits.
With so little food and so many mouths to feed, it is amazing how it has taken this long to accept less than perfect fruit and vegetables. We have rules on accepting each others differences and imperfections, so why not throw a little produce in the mix! Hopefully we can free the other 10 members of the produce family from the European hitmen's list.
Until then, are there any huggers among us that would oppose the consumption of these ugly little market finds (pictured above)? Let your voices be heard...
More on fruits and vegetables
Avoid Pesticides in Fruit and Veggies
Follow the "Three-Month Rule" for Fruits and Vegetables
Nutrition & Kids: Eat Your Fruits & Vegetables
Oddly Shaped Vegetables Allowed in Europe
The New York Times: Europe Relaxes Rules on Sale of Ugly Fruits and Vegetables http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/13/world/europe/13food.html?_r=1&oref;=slogin