The Eyes Have It: Pesticides Stop Sweet Potatoes from Growing Shoots

Chemicals are added to food to kill stuff; then you eat it.

An accidental discovery of a sweet potato several weeks old and growing with shoots calls to mind the impact of pesticides on our food. In the name of controlling all aspects of the lives of plants, companies spray and spray to keep away pests and control the functions of the produce itself.

Potatoes and sweet potatoes — when harvested conventionally — are inundated with pesticides at three levels: early on with fungicide, later with herbicide and finally with BudNip (Chlorpropham) a chemical pesticide used to preserve the tubers and prevent them from growing shoots (and reproducing) [see the EPA’s datasheet on chlorproham here].

From Prevent Disease:

The Farm Director Won’t Eat: Nonorganic Potatoes
Jeffrey Moyer is the chair of the National Organic Standards Board.

The problem: Root vegetables absorb herbicides, pesticides, and fungicides that wind up in soil. In the case of potatoes–the nation’s most popular vegetable–they’re treated with fungicides during the growing season, then sprayed with herbicides to kill off the fibrous vines before harvesting. After they’re dug up, the potatoes are treated yet again to prevent them from sprouting. “Try this experiment: Buy a conventional potato in a store, and try to get it to sprout. It won’t,” says Moyer, who is also farm director of the Rodale Institute (also owned by Rodale Inc., the publisher of Prevention). “I’ve talked with potato growers who say point-blank they would never eat the potatoes they sell. They have separate plots where they grow potatoes for themselves without all the chemicals.” [emphasis added]

Only potatoes/sweet potatoes grown pesticide-free (including organic) can grow them. Meanwhile, the numerous treatments to kill pests mean numerous agents of death also pass into your body when you eat the food treated with the industrial chemicals of modern mega-agriculture.

Recommended: 8 Foods Even The Experts Won’t Eat

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Aaron Dykes

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