I’ve built a bit of a reputation for being pretty PRETTY into almonds–almond milk, almond pulp, almond meal. It comes as no surprise that when news hit of the exorbitant amount of water required to grow a single California almond, people were clamoring to alert me.
Yo, we’re in a humongo drought here in CA, a super-producer state as far as agriculture is concerned, especially water-intensive tasty treats, like say, NUTS (I think almonds aren’t truly a nut, just sayin’.) Whether you’re an almond hater or apologist, you’ve heard the stats: it takes about a gallon of water to grow a single almond, using up 10 percent of California’s agricultural water supply despite the fact that about 2/3 of these Cali almonds are then exported (kinda like just sending our much-needed water away…)
Now that the facts are out there (and even the Almond Board of California isn’t denying them), almonds have become the crop everyone loves to hate. And it makes sense, almonds are all the rage, and people like me sit around soaking and blending and dehydrating and baking them and then blogging about it. The amount of almonds being grown in California has sky-rocketed in Cali, mostly thanks to me telling all my friends about how easy it is to make almond milk.
Here’s the thing, it’s a drought. Like a giant, horrible, crippling drought. Almonds are definitely part of the problem, just as all agriculture and other water-intensive industry is part of the problem, just as lawns, and swimming pools, and fountains, and toilets, and hosing down the sidewalk are part of the problem. But I really can’t believe that placing a bunch of blame on one crop is anything more than scapegoating a trendy, hip, sexy little nut. I’m not advocating increasing your almond-intake, but I’m not yet jumping on board with decreasing it either. Right now I’ve decided to stay neutral as I continue to gather more facts. It’s just almonds as usual over here. But don’t throw stones (from your drought-tolerant landscaping) at me just yet. I am committed to continued research on the subject of water-usage and the California drought, as well as almonds! I plan to share what I learn right here on this blog! Until then, I’m keeping to my varied diet, which doesn’t restrict nor rely on any one type of food or food group, whilst continuing my residential water-saving techniques.
Maybe I should be more apprehensive about posting this but just in case my future research truly deems almonds as pure evil, let’s celebrate them now with these incredibly delicious Almond Meal Cookies with Cacao Nibs and Coconut from The Sprouted Kitchen cookbook (like the real, hard-copy book). I found an adapted recipe at Minimalist Baker but I highly recommend purchasing The Sprouted Kitchen cookbook because it’s beautiful and amazing (or you can borrow my well-worn copy if you want!)
This week, pick something nutty in your life and try to educate yourself on the whole picture!