Organic Foods & Cafe, an organic supermarket and cafe in Dubai, brings a range of organic products to the United Arab Emirates and defines part of its mission as “furthering learning about what is healthy for us and our world and environment around us and promote it.”
The supermarket attempts to create a welcoming and warm environment where customers learn that eating organic doesn’t have to be scary or strange. The cafe offers delicious organic dishes (many of which are vegetarian), such as brie & apple omelettes, mushroom and turkey ham pizza, roasted pumpkin salad, an ostrich special, and freshly squeezed pineapple and cucumber juices.
While their organic values are in the right and their menu sounds delicious, many of their organic products are sourced from overseas and it seems as though very few products are local. In the “Meet the Growers” section of their website, farms are located in countries such as South Africa and Austria. (The one “local” Middle Eastern farm seemed to be Sekem in Egypt.)
Which leads us back to the big green food question: what’s more important – organic or local?
Organic food limits the amount of pesticides used and residual pollution resulting from the growth of produce, as well as eliminating the use of all the fossil fuels involved in the production of pesticides. Local food limits the amount of fossil fuels used to transport the products to a supermarket near you. Obviously the best option is to choose products that are both organic and local, but this is not always an option.
So what is better? Buying organic imported products and produce or going to the local market?
Read more about the organic vs. local dilemma::