Source: Collective Evolution.com
As part of a simple school project a young student by the name of Elise was tasked with discovering how long it would take for a fully grown sweet potato to grow vines.
The project itself is quite simple, and is a regular part of many elementary school curriculum’s since all that it involves is the sticking of toothpicks into the sweet potato and the suspension of it into a glass of water. If left near a window that receives sunlight the sweet potato should grow vines, which is the exact process that Elise was looking to monitor.
Elise’s discovery however went a lot further than this when her initially purchased sweet potato failed to grow vines after three weeks of following the given instructions.
As Elise so adorably mentioned as a part of her explanation, the conventional sweet potato was sprayed with bud nip, alternatively known as Chlorpropham. Bud nip is just one of the many chemicals widely used in non-organic farming and agriculture.
Bud Nip is a plant growth regulator used for the control of grass weeds on several fruit and vegetable plants. In potatoes, such as the sweet potatoes that we conventionally purchase, bud nip is used primarily to inhibit potato sprouting -the exact process that Elise was looking to create as a part of her experiment.
On the surface, bud nip seems relatively harmless, however certain studies show that it also comes with a fair level of potential side effects -many of which Elise mentions -that do more than an adequate job at justifying the ‘caution’ warning that it is labelled with.
What initially started as a simple science experiment quickly evolved into a potential and unintentional piece of evidence in support of the purchase of organic rather than conventional produce.
Bud nip is considered moderately toxic for ingestion, an irritant for the eyes and skin and was responsible for a number of side effects and even death on several of the animals that it was tested on. Despite this, bud nip is regularly used directly on an abundance of non-organic produce, and indirectly on other produce due to its highly soluble nature in both soil and groundwater. This could potentially explain how even the organic sweet potato that Elise had purchased from the conventional grocery store did not sprout nearly as impressively as the final one that she had purchased from the organic food market.
In summation, Elise’s experiment serves as a simple yet profound reminder of the option that we have to grow or purchase organic produce. It may currently be the more expensive of the two produce options that exists, but when it involves our health it certainly cannot be overlooked.