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Organic Consumers Association offers tips on Earth Day for greener baby boomer living

I caught Ryan Zinn, 34, national campaign coordinator for the Organic Consumers Association, just before he was headed out the door on Earth Day to help a school class in his neighborhood organize a vegetable garden.

Earth Zinn said the association is seeing encouraging trends in the organic food movement and baby boomers are an important part of that trend.

“In the last nine to 12 months, we seen consumers incorporating more ecological choices in their shopping,” Zinn said. Sales of hybrid cars, organic food, and socially conscious products are up.

Grocery outlets, such as Safeway and Costco, are selling organic food. “Safeway has its own line of organic products as well,” he said. “That’s really positive.”

Consumers, including boomer consumers, have demanded more organic products and supermarkets have responded.

Another new trend is a huge spike in the purchase of seeds and garden supplies, Zinn said. Whether it’s growing vegetables in a container or a more ambitious garden, people are interested in growing their own food.

Zinn has these tips for baby boomers who want to make more environmental-sound choices in their lives:

  • Set up a compost bin or worm box for vegetable scraps.
  • Leave the grass clippings on your lawn for fertilizer.
  • Buy organic food at your local Farmers’ Market.
  • Find out if any local, organic farmers offer a subscription plan for produce or meat and sign up for weekly boxes of food during the growing season.
  • Work at the local, state, and national level for healthier food choices, such as the serving of locally grown, organic food in school lunchrooms and the labeling of genetically modified food.

He recommends the association’s weekly newsletter, “Organic Bytes,” as a way boomer consumers can learn about organic food issues and actions that are need to foster the organic food movement.

Copyright 2009, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist

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