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Old 04-18-2012, 09:51 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Do alot of restaurants feature organic/grassfed foods?

I assume the counter service places in disney world use the regular spongy stuff for chicken nuggets that include all kinds of weird ingredients and the burgers, same thing, but what about some of the sit down restaurants. Do some sit down restaurants feature organic foods (produce, chicken, etc)? Any sit down places feature grass fed beef? I wanna try and plan on how much stuff I'll need to buy from the grocery store.
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Old 04-18-2012, 01:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
 
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With WDW serving thousands of meals per day, commercial style food is primarily what you will find. Some of the CS places serve processed nuggets, some have fried chicken strips, and some places you can get grilled or roasted chicken. We eat almost all of our meals CS and have enjoyed such things as salmon, roast turkey, and roasted chicken which are commercial but not as processed as good old chicken nuggets. Again, not organic or specially fed.

The restaurants in the Land serve some veggies grown right there, but I don't believe they are grown organically. Fresh though. But you are unlikely to find much outside of the more expensive "signature" restaurants, which may feature free-range chicken, for example. Here is a site with related information: Where to Eat Organic at the Walt Disney World Resort

Here is a link with pictures of the new Babycakes vegan bakery in DTD.
Pollo Campero opens at Downtown Disney at Walt Disney World | The DIS Unplugged Disney Blog

And from the Disney Food Blog, a response to a guest asking about special food needs. Their answer about organics (no, sorry) is about halfway down the page. Disney World Dietary Requests | the disney food blog

However, I did note that you can get organic beer some places and that occasionally, the word organic pops up as in "organic Thom turkey" served for a special holiday dinner. So there is hope--but if you require organic, bring food with you. There are many places in the area to purchase organic/natural foods, including a Whole Foods store, but the regular groceries like Publix and Target will also have a selection. And fresh fruit is available at all parks and food courts.
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Old 04-18-2012, 01:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I am gluten and soy free so I specialize in helping people with special diets.

There are some items that are organic or grass fed but it is rare. Disney buys most food in bulk so it is hard for them to keep track of what is what.

All counter service restaurants, bakeries, and in-house made candy stores have a list of ingredients. I know that the beef does not have many if any ingredients besides beef. You can ask for a substitution such as grilled meat instead of breaded meat. I am sorry but I agree with Disney that organic, hormone free, and grass fed beef is not life threatening or of as much importance as vegan or allergen free foods. Disney already is going way beyond what I could hope for and are trying hard to meet vegan, religious, medical, pharmaceutical, sensitivities, and allergens. Try googling for blog posts by people who are like you as to diet.

WALT DISNEY WORLD GLUTEN-FREE - Glutenista Gluten-Free: Making Gluten-Free Fabulous!
they list special diet foods and some are organic or natural so you can try there
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Old 04-18-2012, 01:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Anyone remember when "corn-fed beef was a positive selling point?

Generally, you won't see terms like organic and grass-fed below the Signature Dining category, but it's certainly possible something will pop up here and there - nothing you can count on.

Yes, there are veggies grown in The Land pavilion - hydroponically for sure, and I doubt that counts as organic. They probably don't use much or anything in the way of pesticides, though.

Not very likely in the parks, but the menus at the various food courts have become more adventuresome, so it wouldn't surprise me (as much) there. You might also find something at the various fruit stands around the parks, but typically I'm sure it's not certified organic.
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Old 04-18-2012, 02:20 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Anyone remember when "corn-fed beef was a positive selling point?
That must have been before the internet. Perhaps before good information was easier to get.
Most fast food and cheap beef comes from gmo corn fed factory cows. Which leads to lots of disease in the cows. Which leads to lots of antibiotics given, which also leads to lots of hormones given.

I don't think there's a person alive who seeks out gmo corn fed beef now, nor hopefully will there ever be again. I don't want to come across as a food snob. I still eat junk sometimes. And I still eat gmo corn fed beef sometimes. I was just wondering. Because I always hear good things about Disney dining.

Also, usually, when a place serves grass fed hamburgers/hotdogs, its usually a given they don't contain added pink slime and nitrates/nitrites.

Last edited by disneyfan2000; 04-18-2012 at 02:36 PM..
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Old 04-18-2012, 03:55 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Anyone remember when "corn-fed beef was a positive selling point?

I do! I remember when "Sweetened with Corn Syrup" was better than "Sweetened with sugar". Of course, I remember when TAB and Diet-Rite were the only sugar free sodas on the market - and they were awful!
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Old 04-18-2012, 06:42 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I don't remember ever seeing grass-fed beef on a menu anywhere in WDW, and it's something I would have noticed since that's what I prefer to eat at home.

The first thing that popped to mind in reading your question was The Wave of American Flavors at the Contemporary. I looked at their current dinner menu on the Disney World website, and it doesn't describe anything as organic, other than some of the beverages (beers and coffees), but they do serve locally grown vegetables and sustainable fish.
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Old 04-18-2012, 07:01 PM   #8 (permalink)
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site:http://allears.net/menu organic
type that in the search at Google
That is how I search a specific site. You can change organic to blackberries or pecans or what ever you want to look for.
I found organic tequilla, coffee, tea, wine, and chicken. However organic chicken looses its healthy state if it is deep fried in unnatural fats and served with unnatural dishes. sigh, give me something easier to hunt for.
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Old 04-19-2012, 02:52 AM   #9 (permalink)
 
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We only buy grass feed or "pastured" meats at home and buy organic whenever possible. If that makes me a food snob, so be it. We are DVC members and long time pass holders at Disneyland and WDW.... When do we give in and just eat whatever? When we are at Disney and monthly trips to In-N-Out burger at home. LOL I suppose I could go to Whole Foods and cook in the villa like we do at home, but dining at Disney is such a big part of our fun. I figure we eat the way we think is best the vast majority of the time.... all things in moderation. (please someone tell me there is no pink slime at Disney)
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Old 04-19-2012, 08:18 AM   #10 (permalink)
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(please someone tell me there is no pink slime at Disney)
Just try not to think about it. The nitrites in the hot dog should cover up the flavor of the ammonia in the pink slime.


Or you could try and avoid the hamburgers and hotdogs at Disney.
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Old 04-19-2012, 10:52 AM   #11 (permalink)
 
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Ha! Thanks for that!!! LOL

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Originally Posted by disneyfan2000 View Post
Just try not to think about it. The nitrites in the hot dog should cover up the flavor of the ammonia in the pink slime.


Or you could try and avoid the hamburgers and hotdogs at Disney.
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Old 04-19-2012, 05:49 PM   #12 (permalink)
 
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We did find bottled Odwalla Mango Tango at the fruit stand in Africa at AK (one snack credit!). I had forgotten about those. Not really organic but definitely healthy. Odwalla
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Old 04-19-2012, 08:27 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by disneyfan2000 View Post
That must have been before the internet. Perhaps before good information was easier to get.
Most fast food and cheap beef comes from gmo corn fed factory cows. Which leads to lots of disease in the cows. Which leads to lots of antibiotics given, which also leads to lots of hormones given.

I don't think there's a person alive who seeks out gmo corn fed beef now, nor hopefully will there ever be again. I don't want to come across as a food snob. I still eat junk sometimes. And I still eat gmo corn fed beef sometimes. I was just wondering. Because I always hear good things about Disney dining.

Also, usually, when a place serves grass fed hamburgers/hotdogs, its usually a given they don't contain added pink slime and nitrates/nitrites.
There was plenty of good info before the Internet. Upton Sinclair's The Jungle drew a lot of attention to the meatpacking industry way back in 1906, and the impact that book continues to be felt to this day. What the Internet has done is make it easier to spread information (accurate and inaccurate) rapidly, and to be able to do it without having access to a newspaper, magazine, TV station, etc.

Is there a person alive who seeks out corn-fed beef now? Probably not. That's the point I was making. But to call it cheap? Wagyu (Kobe-style) beef is fed on grain and grain by-products in a feed lot, and it's hardly cheap, and there are plenty of folks who don't think $12/lb. for a Choice NY Strip is cheap. Cheaper than free-range, grass-fed organic beef? Of course. But as a source of nutrition, animal protein is never cheap. The environmental and social costs are pretty high.

"GMO" means "genetically modified organism." There's certainly a difference of opinion as to whether that's a safe or unsafe practice. The irony, though, is that all of agriculture depends on genetic modification. The only difference is whether it's by selecting accidental mutations and cross-breeding, or making those manipulations at the molecular level. Those prized, "heirloom" fruits and veggies in no way resemble their marginally edible ancient ancestors. If our ancestors hadn't started the practice of "improving" on them, we'd still be hunter-gatherers.

There's also nothing inherently wrong with feeding grain to cattle. It doesn't matter much whether you let 'em wander through a corn field, wheat field, or the open range (well, it'd matter if it was your corn field or wheat field but it wasn't your cattle... ). The issue is that nearly all grain-fed cattle is fattened in feed lots, in very close quarters. They want them to put on weight fast (grain is much better for that than grass) and need to prevent the diseases that come from having the animals in such close quarters, so they usually give them hormones, antibiotics, etc.

In theory, grass-fed cattle could also be given hormones and antibiotics, and could be living in a crowded feed lot. It's the entire process that matters, not one or two particular pieces of the process. Grass-fed cattle may be free-range organic, but it's not a sure thing. And neither is the content of a hot dog or hamburger made with grain-fed beef. Legally, LFTB (lean finely-textured beef)/BLBT (boneless lean beef trimmings) (AKA pink slime) can still be up to 15% of a hamburger in the U.S. without being listed as an ingredient. And hot dogs? Effectively, they always have been LFTB/BLBT, with additional additives. You could make LFTB/BLBT out of 100% grain-fed organic, free-range beef trimmings. If they're going to die for us, shouldn't we waste as little of the animal as possible?

Meantime, we have to be careful about what we assume. If something is grass-fed free-range hormone-free certified organic, you can bet every one of those words is going to be right on the label/menu. Each one of them increases the price. If one or more of those terms is missing, it's probably not an oversight.

I grew up attending an Orthodox Jewish congregation, so I'm quite familiar with folks who are very careful about what they eat, from how it's grown to how it's prepared, to which rabbi put his seal of approval on it. Dietary laws and traditions have been around for many thousands of years, and I don't think that's ever likely to change - food is too fundamental to our survival. Caring about what we eat is not snobbishness by any stretch, but like everything else, there's also never likely to be one universally agreed-to "truth," either.
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Old 04-21-2012, 11:59 AM   #14 (permalink)
 
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Excellent points made, Dave!
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