Home Blog Is Organic Really Better?

Is Organic Really Better?

By Robyn O’Brien

The American Academy of Pediatrics recently weighed in for the first time on organic food, as reported in the Wall Street Journal, suggesting that feeding kids organic fruits and veggies and organic meat just might reduce the risks of certain conditions and diseases and have some health benefits.

The President’s Cancer Panel also sounded alarm bells about chemicals and cancer, encouraging us to eat organic when we can, to reduce our exposure to pesticides and other additives being applied to our foods.

This is something I certainly didn’t do when my kids were younger, reflecting on all of the tubes of blue yogurt and packages of processed foods I’d served up.

When I first heard the term “organic” several years ago, I dismissed it. It connoted a “status” and conjured up two different images: lifestyles of the rich and famous or perhaps some alternative, hippie thing.

I was wrong.

5-TRThe term “organic” actually refers to the way agricultural products are grown and produced. It legally details the permitted use (or not) of certain ingredients in these foods.  When I first learned about it, I thought it was a marketing tool.

The legal details are that the U.S. Congress adopted the Organic Foods Production Act (OFPA) in 1990 as part of the 1990 Farm Bill which was then followed with the National Organic Program final rule published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

The standards include a national list of approved synthetic and prohibited non-synthetic substances for organic production which means that organically produced foods also must be produced without the use of:

  • • antibiotics
  • • artificial growth hormones
  • • high fructose corn syrup
  • • artificial dyes (made from coal tar and petrochemicals)
  • • artificial sweeteners derived from chemicals
  • • synthetically created chemical pesticide and fertilizers
  • • genetically engineered proteins and ingredients
  • • sewage sludge
  • • irradiation

Wow, who knew that conventional, non-organic food could contain these ingredients?  Not many of us, since sewage sludge and artificial growth hormones aren’t on the label.

What about cloning animals or those genetically engineered salmon, hard-wired to double their weight? Those would be considered inconsistent with organic practices, too, because of the laboratory intervention required.

In other words, what we call “organic food,”  our grandmothers would have simply called “food.”  Because a lot of these new ingredients didn’t exist when we were younger, having only been created in laboratories, patented and then introduced into our foods in the last few decades.

LOOK FOR THE SEAL

Products labeled “100% Organic” and carrying the “USDA Organic” seal adhere to a strict legal standard: national organic standards require that organic growers and handlers be certified by third-party state or private agencies or other organizations that are accredited by USDA. Anyone who knowingly sells or mislabels as organic a product that was not produced and handled in accordance with the regulations can be subject to a civil penalty of up to $10,000 per violation.

WHY ORGANICS COST MORE

Admittedly, the high price of organic food can irritate anyone.  But the scrutiny that these foods undergo is enormous and expensive, driving prices at the cash register and for those producing them on the farm.  Why the costs?  Because the cost structure on our food supply offers taxpayer-funded resources called subsidies to the farmers using genetically engineered seeds and saturating crops in insecticides and weed killers, while charging the organic farmers fees to prove that their crops are safe.

That’s like getting fined to wear your seat belt.

In other words, it’s an un-level playing field right now.  And if we were all sitting down as a national family at our national dinner table, I don’t think that any of us would want to be using our resources this way.  Wouldn’t we rather have the organic food be the one that we fund, making it cheaper, more affordable and more accessible to all Americans?

But right now, it’s not.  So should you choose to opt out of our conventional, chemically-intensive food production system and try something organic, you’ll be joining a growing segment of the population and are not alone.

WHERE TO START?

The U.S. organic industry grew 21 percent overall in 2006 with organic foods and beverages continuing to be one of the fastest growing segments in the overall $598 billion food market.

Thankfully, organic foods are increasingly sold in mass market grocery stores like Wal-Mart, Costco, Kroger and Safeway which represent the largest single distribution channel, accounting for 38 percent of organic food sales in 2006. Large natural food chains, along with small natural food chains or independent natural groceries and health food stores, represented about 44 percent of organic food sales. About 2 percent of organic food is sold through farmer’s markets.

Maybe you rolled your eyes at this whole thing a few years ago, dismissing it as an expensive food fad.  I did.  But give yourself permission to change.  Because as the science continues to mount, from the Presidents Cancer Panel to the American Academy of Pediatrics, nothing could be further from the truth. And while none of us can do everything, we can all do one thing. So the next time you are in your grocery store, consider purchasing something “organic”.

You can invest in your health with your shopping cart. And the best medicine you can take, might just be at the end of your fork.

Follow Robyn on Twitter @unhealthytruth and on Facebook.  She is a former financial analyst and author.

 Originally published in Prevention.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000048401314 Radha Sahar

    Yes, important to look for the seal:’certified organic’. Here in New Zealand, organic costs more because the REAL cost of farming would include catering for safe disposal of tonnes of fertilizer, pesticide, herbicide, and animal waste residues currently building up in the environment. If these costs were built in, regular produce would cost heaps more. Essentially the environment is paying. And that will come back to bite us in the butt, so to speak. One example is high cadmium levels in soil due to overuse of super phosphate. It pollutes soil and water, and is so high that animals must be slaughtered at a young age before levels poison humans. And that’s only one nasty! There are only two choices, and organic is the only one that can save our planet. A dead planet is the end cost. Where do you want to put your money?

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003497303542 Leila Baroody

    I believe all ORGANIC labels are not equal – we know what US standards are, although some Johnny come lately Organic large company owners by acquisition have worked to weaken the standards via ownership of organic subsidiaries. Further doesn’t the quality of foreign labeled organic depend on the standards of country of origin? It would be hard to believe USDA has budget to test foreign labeled organic produce. Please comment on this. Thanks.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1000937299 Chuck Bluestein

    The article mentioned that organic means that there are no GEPs (never heard of genetically engineered protein) but does not mention that there are no GMOs in organic food. http://bit.ly/rr9FaK Cide like in pesticides means “kill.”

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1508951174 George Hrebar

    Very informative; good news thing are getting better after all!

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1212336513 Juila Rothschild

    I know organic almonds sold in store must be irradiated (government mandated), and I read about organically grown apples are allowed antibiotics. I don’t believe in organic labeling for food come from China. The USDA has hardly enough budget within the country, and they keep lowering the organic standard; I just can’t imagine what kind of organic standard the USDA can impose.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1212336513 Juila Rothschild

    out of the US.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1212336513 Juila Rothschild

    It should start with a ’9′ for organic.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002620437832 Mayr Berry

    I have been cognizant for decades (thanks to research work and efforts John Robbins and others) of the unfair farming practices from the government by supporting a farming industry that engages in unethical practices by incorporating harmful substances like hormones and pesticides in the food chain. I believe that it is time these archaic and destructive methods shift to support a healthier more organic industry that instead supports life on this planet rather than alter or destroy it! I’ve raised my family on organic food and feel every family should have the same opportunity regardless of social status. When I was going through personal financial crisis and needed assistance from nutrition programs I always invested in organic… my money didn’t go as far as it could have… but one positive outcome is that I have saved tons on doctor bills by taking this preventative health measures route. It’s time for change in the farming industry. Its time for a more ethical approach in farming that supports and sustains life rather than depletes it.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003035370809 Penny Lund

    Organic requirements were changed recently, leaving room to use ‘some pesticides’ and animals that ‘never see the light of day’.

    I look for Certified Naturally Grown, like they use at http://www.3rddayfarm.com.

  • Donna

    My family has been eating "fresh" and "home-made from scratch" for years – and this undoubtedly IS better than canned and packaged, but going organic will be our next step. Thanks for the informative article.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1539334988 Anne Black-Sinak

    I understand that almonds (at least those from California) have to be steam-pasteurized, not irradiated; that’s what the signage in my coop says.

  • Loran

    I recently heard that yellow summer squash and zucchini are now mostly GMO'd too.
    I grow much if my own food, and bought plants for the garden-and seem to be noticing that the squash bugs that I usually have to deal with are almost non-existent this year. Anyone know if it is the weather ….or have I inadvertently purchased baby GMO'd squash Plants with their own DNA -built- in- insecticide??
    Thanks

    • Jan

      HOME GARDENERS BEWARE: MANY TRANSPLANTS ARE GMO

      Loran, I planted zucchini and yellow squash transplants purchased from our local hardware store. Two weeks later, when tossing the label sticks, I noted a lack of genus (its Latin name) or type (i.e. zucchini arlesa). An email to the grower listed on the tag confirmed my suspicions: they were GM, as were all of their seed starters, I was told. Needless to say, the plants were ripped out of the ground and destroyed.

      A look at Monsanto's site shows most of the 'home garden favorites' are available as GM seed for the commercial transplant grower. I've been posting on this whenever and where ever possible, and ask others do the same to make home gardeners aware.

      • Loran

        Thanks Jan. I fear that is the case here. Man! No squash this year! Who would have guessed starter plants from little stores would ALL be GMO'D!!!
        We're sunk.

        Know anything about the cukes? Are they GMO now too?

        I wonder if the farmers market growers know about this?

        We are being blindly led to the gallows….

  • Jim

    Great article. I am dumfounded that it is so hard given the research that is now available to see that what food we eat is predisposing us for diseases as it saps our immune systems. Worse yet, corporations in league with the FDA are actually trying to keep us eating food which even animals are falling sick from after 60-90 days of GMO feed and they cover it up and keep on feeding us this line that it is safe food. Organic farmers and organizations studying growing are advising they can supply higher toxic free food as cheaply as the rot gut we are getting which counteracts all the lies being put forth by the agricultural biotech companies. We all need to wake up and demand this insanity change. In the meantime, I look for organic everywhere I can find it and while it is more expensive often not by much. EAT THE HIGHEST QUALITY FOOD YOU CAN FIND AND AFFORD.

  • https://www.facebook.com/mike.maybury.92 Mike Maybury

    Surely some legislators should be pressing to have susidies of all the chemical practices stopped and be given, instead, to organic growers who can, with their certification be able to prove that they are benefitting the environment and their customers.Political action is something that all adults can engage in. The people have turned against the banks, so now it's time to turn against the giant conglomerates that have had everything their own way for too long.

  • Michael Little

    Thank you for your excellent article. You write, "Wouldn’t we rather have the organic food be the one that we fund, making it cheaper, more affordable and more accessible to all Americans? But right now, it’s not." Are there any groups or organizations dedicated to bringing down the cost of organic food?

    • Sue Savitt

      I was wondering about this myself. I know that there are some organizations that can produce nation-wide petitions to the government. My time is so limited at this point in my life to start up something like this, but two organizations that I'm aware of that allow individuals to start up petitions are Change.org and MoveOn.org. If you have time, maybe you can look into this. I am on the mailing list for these two organizations, and receive requests via e-mail to sign some very worthy petitions. I then receive follow-up e-mails to get updates on the success of the petitions. I'm sure there are other organizations as well, but I can't think of their names.

  • https://www.facebook.com/giacchinopalma Linda Palma

    This is all well and good but what about people who can barely afford to feed themselves let alone buy organic!!!

    • Melody

      We are a single income household, low income, about 25,000 per year. It is possible to maintain a local, predominantly organic diet when you purchase from local smaller suppliers (farmers markets and co-ops, etc.), buy what is in season, and plan your meals ahead for the week.
      We purchase our grains mainly from bulk sections, only buying what we need, including our flour, oats, brown rice, millet, and barley (these items are very filling- so you will use less) and our dry beans as well. Our dinners are mostly vegetarian, but we enjoy local-organic chicken and or beef when it is on sale, we eat just about 1/4 to 1/2 lbs each person.
      Our cleaning products and skin care is home-made when possible, it is fun to experiment with different recipes.
      This way of thinking, shopping, and cooking brings our family closer together, and our meals are diverse so we feel satisfied longer after a wonderful dinner or morning breakfast.
      We rarely buy lunches at all anymore, we pack a small container for on the go which has also been a major savings on the monthly budget.

    • Jaz

      Linda Palma,,,i am disabled, on a very low fixed income that will not improve, yet i eat organic. I have found that it costs twice as much, sometimes more, so i understand your point. However, i have found that i need to eat much less food, if it is organic, because it has much more vitamins, minerals, and substance, and also tastes better and satisfies hunger with much smaller serving sizes than gmo food. Try it and see if its true for you too, i think you will find it is.
      Jaz

  • https://www.facebook.com/debra.l.phillips.94 Debra L Phillips

    I see more organic products at my local grocery each week which seems to be the old fashioned law of demand in force. Prices are dropping naturally with honest competition.

  • Bonnie

    Thanks Robyn for all you are doing ! I grew up on a Dairy farm / Beef Ranch. Dad sold the Dairy after I was married in 1975, my older bros. had left the farm to work else where.
    My husband and I with the help of our children, raise hay for our childrens horses and for the dozen or so beef we have. (On the farm that he grew up on) I also have a backyard flock of chickens. In 2009 I felt strongly that I needed to be self reliant and wanted 'Real Food" for my family, my grandchildren and parents. I bought 2 Swiss Jersey heifers, raised them organically. My cow calved in May of 2011, she has provided my family with Raw organic milk ever since. Her first calf was half angus which provided us with organic beef. Her second calf is a Swiss Jersey heifer,10 months and hopefully will be another good milk cow. I sold the other original heifer and her calf last fall. Hanah my cow is such a 'Good cow' I have been making our own yogurt. I have made several batches of cheese and butter. ( Very time consuming) And we have had our own homemade ice cream as well. Our garden does pretty good but I do need to improve on my green thumb !!!
    My father grows hay for his horses and cows and sells the rest. He has used Round Up on his fields. I have tried to let him know the dangers of Round up and GMO crops. I wont use any of his hay and I have told him and my mom about wonderful herbs that I am also learning about and using, but let him know that I can not use any off of his property. I have tried to give him info and such but he doesn't use the computer and believes most of the hype given out by Monsanto and the Agriculture Dept.s that that is the only way to feed the world. So many of the good old farmers have no clue and believe what they have been told by the industry. We have to educate those folks as well and many of them do not use the internet but believe what they have been told. It is very scary. !!!

  • rawsomegal

    Everything that Robyn says, I have been living for over 22 years as a vegan and KNOW organic produce is very important to my life/lifestyle, as that is what I live on mostly, as a Whole Food Plant Based Vegan.

    For the person who talked about almonds, you can get truly raw ones from http// :www.livingtreecommunity.com – They are a superb company with the highest integrity and purity that you will find with organic food products.

    As for me, I want people to have as many resources as they can to learn about health living/lifestyle, so I have included information about myself and what I do.

    I started my blog in December 2009 as a result of embarking on a 42 day
    coconut water cleanse. I recorded a day-to-day account of my experiences.
    After that I wrote articles on health and wellness. I have also done Q & A
    interviews with companies called, "People, Products and the Health of Our
    Planet." I want you to have information on the best that is out there. I
    have been testing various products and have reviews on my site, too. I
    believe in using the purest products with companies that have the highest
    integrity, consciousness and care for the planet.

    Please check my blog frequently as I will be posting new reviews, etc on a
    regular basis. I have an abundance of information already there that you
    can peruse. You can also subscribe to my blog and get an email when there
    is a new post. You are welcome to leave a comment, as well, to any posts
    that you read.

    Here is a link to my blog: http// :www.rawsomegal.wordpress.com

    I also have a YouTube channel with recipes, company reviews, etc. You can
    subscribe to it if you have a YouTube, Google+, Gmail, Orkut, Picasa or
    Chrome account. Please like my videos and leave your comments. My channel
    is TheRawsomeVeganGal – make sure you search google and write it exactly as
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    I am a vegan chef and educator and am available for your assistance. I
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  • rawsomegal
  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001332982534 Brad Wilson

    In this discussion it’s important to include the farmer or “farm justice” side of the issue. Farmers have long subsidized all food below fair trade, living wage price levels, (since 1953) and also below costs (1981 to 2006 or to 2013, depending on the crop), and that subsidization has been much (ie. 8x) bigger than subsidies, so the net result, after paying subsidies from taxpayers to farmers, is that farmers subsidize consumers about 8x more (using the traditional “fair trade” “living wage” standard of “parity”). So organic food costs more because those farmers rarely have had to subsidize consumers. Prices of farm commodities have been low for non organic because farm market prices don’t self correct in free markets very well at all under most market conditions we’ve had for well over 100 years, (the economic cause, lack of price responsiveness) and because Congress reduced 1953-1995) and eliminated (1996-2013) the market management (farm bill) policies and programs of the New Deal nonsubsidy farm programs. The statements here that it’s caused by subsidies are invalid, widespread but not based on science. Food stamps don’t cause Walmart to pay low wages, nor do compensations to farmers for low prices cause Cargill, ADM, Kelloggs, General Mills, Smithfield, Dean Foods, Kraft, etc. to pay low prices to farmers. To oppose AgBiz cheap food requires something other than subsidy reforms, which do nothing. It requires support for the major “Farm Justice Proposals for the 2012 Farm Bill,” now 2013. We had organic certification for decaded prior to the 1990 act and USDA involvement. For most of the past 3 decades, organic markets have grown faster than supplies, so they did not lack price responsiveness. That’s been changing, with AgBiz involvement in organics, plus 1997-2005, with no market management programs, we saw the lowest farm prices in history (lower than the 1980s, then the 1990s). So organic (& local) farmers got premiums on top of that.

  • Heloise

    be careful with organic ''standards'', since july 2011 the USDA has allowed more than 400 new toxins within the frame of what they call organic…Disagree with this. If we don't disagree it will continue and increase. Why not study about wild foods and start harvesting? It's way cheaper and much more organic than whatever you will find in supermarkets or farmers markets. It is fresher, much richer in minerals and vitamins, etc. etc.

    • https://www.facebook.com/larene.wolfe LaRene Joan Wolfe

      My parents grew up on farms, raised a Victory Garden in our city yard during WWII and fed us largely from that source. I'm a 3rd generation backyard gardener as are my grown children. My grandchildren eat organic food. It's our way of life. May the 5th generation carry on this healthy lifestyle as they grow food for generation #6!

  • john

    check out the weston price foundation/…..and natasha campbell mcbride for the best
    information for nutrition…and gut health!!!!!!!!

  • Dee Ragin/Focus On Fitness Health and Wellness

    There is a definite difference in taste and health benefits. All we have to do is look at all of the diseases associated with pesticides, antibiotics, gmo's, etc. It's so obvious. I think most people are in denial and too caught up in our 'convenience' society. It's not convenient to buy organic so many don't want to hear about it. It's really sad and we are paying for it with healthcare.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001050036121 Johnny Zumba Zumbero

    Big Huge and Massive question mark? about the larger food suppliers selling organic! Period! I would never buy my organics from them… I’ve followed the corporate chain of all of them and guess where it leads? (meaning guess who the company’s, Affiliates and the CEO’s are and their agenda’s).
    I would only ever shop at small organic outlets that I trust and know the produce is 100% Organic. we need to promote local community not these giants! live locally like out ancestors did not so very long ago! Its so simple Really..

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002620437832 Mayr Berry

    I completely concur @[100002273772113:2048:Gigi Saporiti]! I am appalled at this aspect of the industry from John Robbins’ expose in the ’90s and am still speechless that continues today. Now the animal slaughter industry is looking to have the government intervene to enforce laws that prevent whistle blowers from taking photographs and gathering evidence that supports the atrocities of their barbaric and archaic business practices. We are living in the Twilight Zone!

  • http://goo.gl/pgcdc kata kata

    thanks because you my body is slim :D

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

  • http://www.biryaniking.in Biryani King

    When you’re shopping for organic foods in the U.S., you can look for the “USDA Organic” seal to make sure that the food is 100 percent organic .. but in other countries, we have to just trust the labels till stricter standards are enforced .

  • informationwarfareblog

    I'm surprised I didn't see the token "organic is bullshit" in the comments section of the article. I would laugh at those people if they weren't poisoning themselves and their children with their selfish ways.

  • Ketty Pearson

    The demand of organic food is increasing day by day and people are more interested in having organic food as these healthy and nutritious. Also these foods are quite genetically modified foods which can be unhealthy sometimes. Organic foods are the genetically modified foods which can be sometimes unhealthy. http://www.gsplantfoods.com/orchid-care-tipsdirec

    • ant

      stupid

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

  • taylor

    I purchase all organic fruits and vegetables. Yes, I'm told my people who don't believe in organic, it's crazy to spend more .I tell them it make me feel happy and that's all that matter

  • Wtg

    I wish they would completely do away with all pesticides in any form for about 6 months, then see where we are at.

  • Wtg

    I wish they would completely do away with all pesticides in any form for about 6 months

  • organic vegetables

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    • Taylor

      WTF? srinu??

  • srinu

    hi , now a days doctor and scientists are suggested to take organic food very demanded this is very useful thank you for information. < a href="http://organicvegetablesindia.blogspot.in/&quot; > organic vegetables hyderabad

  • srinu

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  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

  • Eva

    I am really jealous of people in Europe, like my daughter who lives there now, who eat healthy, organic food all the time under the "biologic" label. The price is the same or fractionally higher. These countries take great pride in their farmers and locally produced food as evidenced by the numerous agriculturally based festivals held in towns with local vendors. Europeans also take great pride in crafting very fine, tasty food products and beverages which can be sampled during fairs and purchased at markets. There bakeries are unsurpassed. Their meat is expensive generally, especially beef, as it should be. However, pork, chicken and fish are plentiful. We have driven out our local family farmers and replaced them with corporate farming operations. I am glad the local farmer market scene is making a comeback and that prices on organic food continually drop with demand and access. However, we have a very long way to go before we eat as well as our European counterparts.

  • Al Metcalf

    When is the mainstream media going to wake-up and allow the negative impact the GMO's and chemicals etc in our food are having on the health of the population to be broadcast for all to hear? The general mindset still is that so-called "scientists" and government agencies are looking out for the well-being of the population, so would not allow anything into the food chain that would hurt us! When is this lie going to be blown open?
    The next fruit to soon be foisted upon the general populous is the non-browning GMO apple. Any fruit that does not naturally oxidize cannot be properly digested. Who is going to inform the population of its dangers?
    The human (and animal) physiology is not designed to digest and utilize genetically altered foods!! The nutrient content may be similar or even higher (which I doubt) but if the body cannot extract the nutrients, and/or the natural intestinal flora cannot break it down, and body systems are altered or made more permeable allowing tixins and undigested materials to enter the blood or body cells before properly digested, it is not much wonder we are seeing and experiencing massive increases in almost all diseases and conditions from diabetes to heart disease to Alzheimers to learning disabilities. The proof is right in front of our noses, but few are reading the evidence. Most people had never even heard the word "Autism" 20 years ago! Now 1:50 children have some form of Autism Spectrum disorder! What's changed? The only causative denominator is that our food supply has been drastically altered! We are being no-so-slowly poisoned!

    • https://www.facebook.com/eva.balint.737 Eva Balint

      The mainstream media is never going to tell the truth. They are all owned by the same few families who own the food industry, banking and control Monsanto. Their agenda is population reduction. Food is only 1 of their weapons they use against us. They also succeeded in poisoning the air and water. So no. Mainstream media will never tell the truth about anything.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

  • Chloe

    Walmart selling organic produce : that can be problematic, for that chain needs a huge supply. Can hundreds of acres of 'organic' this or that still comply with the mandate of organic agriculture, and adhere to the principles of bio-diversity?

    • http://n/a Lynda Lowery

      After Fukashima Diichi, the reports are that it continues to leak huge volumes of harmful radiation throughout a wide area including most countries that surround it, enen affecting Hawaii, and the U.S. western coastal states from Oregon to the Baja. This toxic problem affects the land, water, air, and anything it touches.

      I have read that almost ALL of Walmart organics are from China, so I try to search for fresh imports from nations least affected by ongoing nuclear meltdowns that last for 1000 or more yes!

      • http://n/a Lynda Lowery

        “years”, not “yes”.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

  • ant

    Is it great to be totally, with your head in the clouds
    more people like that and Hitler would have won!
    I thought I was just was a marketing tool.
    Wow, who knew that nothing could be further from the truth And while none of us can do everything, some of us can do nothing with the brains we got.

  • Igotocheapcuts

    Food is alive,so are we….so eating DEAD products is causing disease,dispair, degeneration.

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  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002588350124 Cathy Michalak

    Thank you for the information on organic veggies! I have a booklet coming on the subject and am looking forward to it.

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  • Michael Anderson

    The salient paragraph in this entire article is the one describing TAXPAYER-FUNDED subsidies to conventional agriculture for use of, well, POISONS.

    The history of the United States is one of "you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours" business practices, and all of history can be realistically analyzed using economic models (Marx was VERY good at this).

    And, of course, never mind the consequences.

    The fact that all these "progressive" farming practices using petro-chemicals HAVE to be CONSTANTLY updated(read NEW PRODUCTS), otherwise, after a period of time, they cease to be effective for the purpose they were created for, or in the case of animals, they are used STRICTLY for convenience.

    They serve to prop up a system that is, as we speak, in the early stages of breakdown. This system (Capitalism-Corporatism) requires unlimited growth to sustain itself—that is the ecology of the cancer cell.

  • Ken Gale

    It's not enough to simply buy 100% organic, we must stop the policy that gives subsidies to creating less healthy food in the first place. We didn't buy our way into this mess and we can't buy our way out.

  • Om Sairam

    Violence in any form is evil and to take the life of an innocent animal is tantamount to blatant savagery.

    Sorry, folks, as long as the above is going on, even organic won' t help you.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1111818608 J.T. Smith

    The problem for some of us is the simple fact that we literally cannot financially afford the price difference. When you don’t have 2 pennies ti rub together, you have to make sacrifices whether you want to or not.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1111818608 J.T. Smith

    The problem for some of us is the simple fact that we literally cannot financially afford the price difference. When you don’t have 2 pennies ti rub together, you have to make sacrifices whether you want to or not.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1111818608 J.T. Smith

    The problem for some of us is the simple fact that we literally cannot financially afford the price difference. When you don’t have 2 pennies ti rub together, you have to make sacrifices whether you want to or not.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001145414176 Roseann Duchon

    I just sent the EWG’s Shoppers Guide to Pesticides in Produce chart to my five adult children. Also when shopping, look at the little sticker on the fruit or veggie. If the number starts with a 4, it has pesticides, etc. If it starts with a 7, it’s organic.

  • http://facebook.com/profile.php?id=1332529778 Lauren Ayers

    One of the worst things allowed into the Organic Standards, despite 100 commenters who objected when the standards were being written, is fluorine-based fumigants. Sure, fluorine is ‘natural’ but so is arsenic! Unlike Europe, where the warehouse must be empty when it is fumigated, US warehouses just put in the gas with food present, so it gets on everything. For those who don’t pay extra for organic, you’ll get another dose of fluoride from the cryolite that is a fluorine-based pesticide used on many veggies, fruits, and nuts. There is no regular testing of fluoride in foods. Search fluoride at Environmental Working Group or FluorideAlertorg.

  • Jordan

    The key to affordable organic food is information and personal initiative. Start to grow your own as much as you can, buy staples in bulk and search and to find your local “Beyond organic ” usually direct marketing or CSA farmers. Visit the farms, volunteer to help out and find out exactly how they grow things and how they take most of the risks and how small the profit margins are.
    The USDA has stolen the word Organic from the originators of the movement whose original goal was to produce the best food possible for themselves and others. If you get to know and buy direct from a farmer friend you won’t have to depend on a costly bureaucracy to guarantee that your food is real. Most supermarket Organic food is better than non-organic but it has become a pawn of corporate America to the economic detriment of the cost conscious consumer and the small farmer.

  • DAB

    Many mineral supplements contain basic elements, not grown in plants. “Organic” only applies to plants & meats – otherwise it’s pointless. Like the “natural” word in marketing. Same issue with various chemical compounds, like vitamin C (ascorbic acid) – its only one & the identical molecule regardless of where it comes from or how it’s made.

    Please keep in mind that USDA allows “organic” labels on stuff that’s poorly inspected or tested, and USDA allows a LONG list of synthetic & factory-made chemicals to be used on them. We all know the state of industrial chemicals safety testing is abysmal. So Organic could have stuff that’s just as bad or worse than what they can’t use on Organic. So don’t be under the illusion Organic means it’s Safe or Good. It merely means a few things we know are bad are not used. There’s no really confident Safe unless you grow it yourself with the right seeds, do extensive soils & water testing, cook it right, etc.

    So Organic needs to be kept in perspective & common sense applied.

  • DAB

    Correction, Organic foods have a 5 digit UPC code starting with 9.