Organic Propaganda

Posted on November 27, 2011 by

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In today’s society consumers are bombarded with Organic Propaganda.  The Organic Food Movement, who doesn’t really care what your family eats, has done a great job of marketing organic food, mostly with scare tactics.  It often times aligns itself with campaigns that create the illusion that it is healthier or safer for you, which is simply false.

Four of these choices are either associated with a health condition or simply a better way to eat…organic does not fall into those categories.

Organic food is no more nutritious for you than conventionally produced food. In 2009, the UK’s Food Standard Agency commissioned a comprehensive review of articles and studies over the last 50 years comparing Organic and Conventionally produced food.  The conclusion found that there was no significant if any nutritional differences in the products and no additional health benefits from eating organic food.   Most people can agree with this because using common sense and some basic science one realizes that, for example, an apple is apple…you cannot alter the molecules that make an apple by using a different method of production.

A misconception that is often associated with Organic is that they do not use pesticides.  News Flash: They DO use pesticides.  Some pesticides used are the same ones used in conventional methods and others are not.  The difference in pesticides is whether they are synthetically produced or naturally occurring, not whether its safer or not.  A pesticide is meant to get rid a pest that is doing harm and are only used when necessary in any type of farming.   However, Organic pesticide usage is not recorded or regulated by the government like conventional usage is.

Leaders in the Organic Food Movement acknowledge that pesticides are used when asked.  However they often tout that Organic food has less pesticide residue.   Every year the Environmental Working Group publishes an article telling the public which produce contains the most pesticide residue, also known as The Dirty Dozen. This study is not very upfront about methodology, nor do they explain how pesticide residues are measured on food.  Residues are measured with the chronic reference dose, which is established by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), meaning the acceptable level intake one can have without having effects throughout their lifetime.  A study recently published in April in the Journal of Toxicology finds that “dirtiest” produce had levels of pesticides 1,000 times lower than the chronic reference dose.  That means it is very safe to eat.

If Organic food has no additional nutritional benefit and is no more safe to eat than conventional produce, then the cultivation methods must be better for the environment.  This is a misconception. In many cases, with advances such as No-till, GPS, and advanced breeding techniques, conventional agriculture has lower impact than organic methods.  Often times organic methods require more tillage, more applications of chemicals and sometimes more land.

Diversity is what makes the agriculture world go around. Organic has a place in the world.  However it is no more superior than any other method of farming.  The Organic Food Movement has marketed it as such because that’s what marketing is.  Convincing consumers that one product is better than the other.  All to increase profits, which is ironic for a movement whose roots are based in Socialism…but I’ll save that post for another time.  I applaud them for wanting to make more money. All consumers have freedom of choice and we must all choose what is best for our families and pocketbooks not because someone scared you into it.

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