Saturday, May 5, 2012

GREENFEST 2012! (Part 1.)

After almost a full week of being MIA, this blog can come back with a vengeance!From this week on, I'll be doing daily entries again! That said, this entry and tomorrow's (and Monday's) will be special in more ways than one.

You may have noticed that a lot of my entries encourage conservation. Usually, if something is endangered, I'll be all "blah blah blah, save the trees, we probably won't see this species again." It all sounds so hopeless and depressing, not to mention repetitive and annoying.

Well, not this time. This time, I went to Greenfest, one of Chicago's biggest eco-friendly events. It's so eco-friendly that every visitor got a reusable tote bag - a good reusable tote bag that I can tell won't break after just a few uses. Enough about the tote bag. Let's sink our teeth into the first part of this massive entry; I'm going to be covering everything I saw there over the next two days. (For the sake of your sanity and mine, however, I will try to limit it to ten booths per entry.)

1.  First booth I saw belonged to O organics. If you live near a Dominick's store, you are probably familiar with their label. They have almost all of your favorites in organic form - from pizza to baby food. Their stuff is pretty good, as I was reminded by their juice and tea samples, and I got some free popcorn to boot! As far as I know, they don't BS like Jewel's brand of organics, Wild Harvest, which I have seen using trans fat.

2. Oh, how I love Clif bars. Oh, how I hate that so many of my favorite health bars tend to sneak almonds in there after a while (I'm allergic). Luckily, none of the samples they were handing out had tree nuts slipped in except in trace amounts (i.e. inevitable amounts). So far, they have been great about the nut thing and kept their recipes the same as always. The man in the picture tossed free Clif Crunch bars at me after holding them up to his face. Label to camera, label to camera!

3. Think that organic food is too expensive for you? Think again! specializes in delivering coupons on organic food right to your e-mail. It helped that they had chocolate covered mulberries and nice-looking spokespeople at their booth.

4. Greenfest was brought to you by Ford! Apparently, they are doing all sorts of things to try and make their vehicles more green. This includes using more eco-friendly steel, utilizing wood that was destroyed by the Mountain Pine Beetle plague, and, of course, painting a car green. Good luck competing with the Prius; you'll need it.

5. Endangered Species chocolate has been one of my favorite brands for a while. Their bars can usually be found in health food stores and are made from only fair-trade chocolate. They used to come with little 'trading cards' - insects for the Bug Bites, named chimpanzees for the Chimp Mints - but if I recall, they stopped that. Still great chocolate for the eco-conscious, though.

6. Naked food juice has been a lifesaver for me over the past few months (especially last night, when dinner was delayed at a volunteer event). For those of you unfamiliar with the brand, Naked juices are basically meals in a bottle. They're like smoothies without crushed ice and fill you up for a bit when solid food is not available. One of their newer products was a blueberry-oat mix (a muffin in a bottle?). Unfortunately, it had almond milk in food, why must you taunt me so?!

7. Ahhh, more chocolate. That title card doesn't lie - Divine chocolate is amazing. They encourage women to farm their cocoa, so feminists can rejoice in buying their sugary goodness It's also really expensive, so I'm glad they had a lot of free samples! ( I did get some white chocolate strawberry medallions towards the end. I intend on sharing them.)

8. Interested in paying a visit in Chicago? Don't forget to check out the Green Chicago Restaurant Coalition's list of environmentally-friendly eateries. (P.S.- if I ever meet any of you in Chi-town offline, I will take you to Gino's East regardless of how green it is. Can't beat a classic.)

9. I actually had to do a bit of research for this one. After hearing how bad Monsanto is via Twitter for a while, finally gave me some solid figures. Those are probably just the tip of the iceberg! This particular fight against Monsanto is from As per their website:

"For nearly two decades, Monsanto and corporate agribusiness have exercised near-dictatorial control over American agriculture, aided and abetted by indentured politicians and regulatory agencies, supermarket chains, giant food processors, and the so-called "natural" products industry.

Finally, public opinion around the biotech industry's contamination of our food supply and destruction of our environment has reached the tipping point. We're fighting back."

10. To round off the night, no hippie fest would be complete without Eastern things like yoga and organic henna. :) I was tempted to get one. They had tweaked Zodiac symbols, too. Speaking of, I need to wrap my head around Vedic astrology next...


  1. I also got a free sample of Organics popcorn. I usually run the other way from microwave popcorn because I know the chemicals in the bags can be very toxic. I'm trying to find out information about what is used in their bag...because it totally defeats the purpose to eat organic popcorn cooked in a toxic bag. Any idea on this info?

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