I see a world…

I see a world where cities are pristine, clean, green and wonderful places to live. Where much of our food is grown locally. Where fish and birds swim with our children in the rivers.

So many of us unthinkingly view cities are naturally dirty, smoggy, and see the country as the only alternative. It doesn’t have to be like that. Small garden plots can produce a remarkable amount of food, with enough to share for the wildlife. I wonder why huge rural farms don’t manage to share anything, and any visiting insect finds itself dead rather than fed.

Space in cities is a challenge, but there are wonderful designs for urban farms, skyscrapers of greenery rather than office drudgery. But there’s still much to do. The Johannesburg CBD is threatened by rising acid mine water. The kind produced when someone, somewhere, saw the poisonous runoff and blocked out any thoughts of where it would go, where it would end up. “Not part of my job”, perhaps they thought.

Except there were many “someones”, and now it’s a crisis in the Johannesburg CBD.

Tigers and Cheetahs
Even out of the city it’s been quite a week. First there really were tigers in Africa after a “pet” tiger jumped off a bakkie (near the Wimpy in Delmas, of all places to choose) and had a few hours of freedom before being recaptured. Next, there’ll be cheetahs in India. Well, there soon will be, after a plan to reintroduce cheetahs to India 63 years after the last one was shot, purportedly by the Maharajah of Surguja. The cheetahs will be transferred from South Africa, Namibia and Iran. India hardly has space for the tigers, I wonder where the cheetahs will go.

Sick of…
Someone today said they were “sick of guavas”. Guavas have been widely available for a while now, and perhaps they’ve been overdoing it. Someone else told me they appreciated the warm, sunny day today more coming as it does after the cold weather.

Change is such an important part of our lives. After the winter where variety is limited, we appreciate the first taste of the spring and summer fruits. But supermarket homogeneity robs us of that. We have the same fruit all year round, and rarely experience the thrill of food coming back into season, and that first taste.

Right now it’s clearly winter, with my fruit bowl loaded with oranges, lemons, naartjies and grapefruit. Not to mention shaddock, which I’m tasting for the very first time today. It really does taste like a sweet grapefruit.

We have quite a few new and returning products this week, too many to highlight in Featured and New. There are a number of new certified organic herbs and spices, including cayenne pepper and tarragon, as well as two new superfoods from Soaring Free Superfoods.

Remember, while you’re reading, others are ordering, and we’re probably almost out of milk and eggs already! Head on over to www.ethical.org.za to see what’s left.

Have a great week,
Ian and the Ethical Co-op team.