When was the last time you found a worm in an apple? Likely, it wasn’t very recently, perhaps never. The Environmental Working Group (EWG), a health research and advocacy organization, recently released their annual report that advises consumers on the pesticide content in our food. Data was analyzed from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Food and Drug Administration to rank the presence of pesticide residue in 48 popular produce items. Apples are ranked number one. Chances are 99% likely that pesticides are the side item you can’t refuse when you eat an apple – no matter if you wash it or not.
According to the EPA there are many types of pesticides that in some way or another “kill”, “control”, or “disrupt” the pests and nuisances that would otherwise have their way with our produce. Without pesticides farming becomes much more difficult. Organic farmers must control for pests strategically with methods such as rotating crops and planting crops that attract the predators that are pests of another. Despite the planning required, studies have shown that organic farming will result in some extraordinary benefits such as a decreased threat to wildlife and chemical pollution.
A transition to organic farming would require a concerted effort and a willingness by consumers to accept less than perfection, perhaps even the occasional worm.
Expect your career to be like the organic apple. Maybe it will be a big apple with a little worm. Or maybe it will be a little apple with a big worm. You can’t kill, control, or disrupt chance. And there is no pesticide to prevent all that will be a nuisance. If there was, your life would be as uninteresting as perfection.