I thought I’d share my reasons for choosing organic ingredients, and why I don’t insist on everything being organic: small and local is even more important.
The ecological impact of farming with fossil fuel fertilizers and pesticides is my primary motivation, so at their best organic practices result in a long-term rebuilding of soil and an integrated ecosystem that balances supporting wildlife and managing pests. This is a conservative view about what world we should leave after us, along with a humble sense of our place in that world. Hopefully it tastes better too.
All of our flour, butter, olive oil and olives are always organic. These recent years have sometimes made our preferred ingredients temporarily available, but most of the time (including right now) our nuts and sugar and chocolate are organic too. Whenever our fruits are not from around here, we choose organic.
However, there are challenges and nuance with this stance, as large scale organic farming can still be ecologically destructive, organic doesn’t address other concerns of global trade or labor or equity, and small local farms often have tradeoffs to make in practices and costs to be certified organic. When we can source local eggs and fruit, we do, and fair trade certification for chocolate or sugar is as important as organic. And in the end, we compost all of our food and paper waste to make our own small local contribution back to the soil.