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Tree's a Crowd (NY Times)

Op-Ed Sampler

It's Not Easy Being Organic

THEY spring from a tree that I've nurtured from a sapling. I have protected them from deer, squirrels, insects and fungi, and fed them a healthy diet of compost and manure. So why do I feel so guilty about eating these apples?

Because they are not organic.

It's not that I didn't try...

It was not a decision taken lightly, and the first time I sprayed the trees I felt like I had let down an entire generation: my generation, the Woodstock generation...

There is, in fact, a technology available today that can drastically reduce if not eliminate the use of pesticides, natural or manufactured: genetically modified organisms. Such plants are engineered with natural insect resistance and offer substantial reductions in pesticide use without the increased costs associated with conventional organic crops. Monsanto, for example, claims that over the last 10 years, use of its genetically modified seeds has reduced the application of pesticides by 172,000 metric tons. Yet such "Frankenfood" is anathema to the very people who are the strongest proponents of organic food...

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