Tomatoes are one of natures perfect foods. In my house tomatoes are a staple. I use them in sauces, salads, sandwiches, salsa, and numerous recipes. They are packed with lycopene and an excellent source of vitamin C.
I was reading an article from the Science and Development Network about recent research discovering how tomatoes thrive on a urine diet. That is right, URINE. Now I’m not an expert in agriculture or any genius in science, but the new findings do not sound very appetizing. Apparently, Surendra Pradhan, an environmental biology researcher at the University of Kuopio, Finland, and his colleagues tested potted tomato plants with one of the following three treatments: mineral fertilizer, urine and wood ash, urine only, and no fertilizer. The study showed the tomato plants fertilized with urine quadrupled and did as well as the mineral fertilized plants. They also found that the urine fertilized plants contained more protein and were deemed safe for human consumption.
Pradhan told SciDev.Net, “this is a very simple technology. Urine can be collected in a urine-diverting toilet or it can be collected in a separate jerry can [from] an ordinary, pre-existing toilet. If wood ash is available, this can be use as a supplement of phosphorus, potassium and other nutrients.”
He further explains that the method is a free alternative to expensive mineral fertilizer, which is not easily accessible in isolated or hilly areas.
I’m not oblivious that most plants are fertilized with cow dung, but the thought of human urine just completely disgusts me. Am I alone in this thinking?
Back in March 2008 the Associated Press released a report stating a large array of pharmaceuticals including antibiotics, mood stabilizers, sex hormones, and other substances were found in the drinking water supplies of more than 41 million Americans. Even though it was a tiny amount detected, it was still in the water. How did it get there? From what I am understanding, people take pills, and even though their bodies absorb the medication some if it passes through then flushed down the toilet. The wastewater is treated before it is expelled into the reservoirs and lakes. Next, the water is cleaned again at the water treatment plants and distributed to consumers. But the treatments do not completely remove all the drug residue.
Well if the treatments can not completely remove the drugs from the purified urine, than what happens to the tomato plants being doused with the unpurified human urine fertilizer? Like I said I am not a scientist, I could be completely wrong in my reasoning, but this just sounds repulsive.
When does organic become too organic? All I know is I like my tomatoes fresh and urine free. Please do not pee on my tomatoes!