Chemicals seem to be everywhere in our environment and no more so than in our food. Whether it be colourants, stabilisers, emulsifiers or preservatives, it is a rapid task to look at some of the jars in your cupboard to determine the involvement of industrial methods in our food chain.

Getting back to basics, either by producing our food or using local bio suppliers is just a first step in both reducing chemical input but also caring for our environment by reducing the energy cost of what we eat.

Reducing energy consumption can come about by paying attention to the energy cost of our food and the goods we consume. Start by looking at the distance they have travelled and by making some calculations on the energy used in processing them in some factory.

Getting back to basics involves putting a little more time into preparation, using wholesome ingredients and where possible locally produced organic food. The debate is much broader than ever before with a good deal of awareness over these matters. But how natural is your organic food?

What guarantees can your organic producer give of not just not using pesticides and herbicides, but also ensuring that neighbouring soils and cultivations do not contaminate his crops? Get out there and ask a few questions, give some thought to the pollution of land and watercourses, seas and air and be concerned about the interaction between bio and non-bio sites.