Organic food – What is an ‘organic’ label really worth?

Posted on 2015/02/11 in Business, Google+, Health, Science & Technology

"Supermarkets in North America and Europe are overflowing with organic-labelled fruit, vegetables, eggs and meats. More than 80 countries have organic standards and products carry one or more of 200 seals, logos and certification claims."

"But are consumers able to make informed choices? What’s the real ethical impact of “buying organic”? The answers are murkier than you might think."

"Ecolabels represent an ecological, ethical, ingredient or sustainability claim. The US, Canada, the European Union and Japan have comprehensive organic standards overseen by governments. Many nations have a “100% organic” label. But the devil is in the detail, and the details can be devilish indeed."

"The organic industry in North America and Europe is now estimated to be worth a combined €40bn a year. According to the European commission, those regions comprise 90% of global organic consumption."

"Of course, with success comes temptation; the organic industry is no different from any other. For the most part, fraud has been sporadic. Over the years, there have no doubt been instances of panicked farmers facing an insect infestation spraying an unapproved herbicide; or a hard-pressed supplier mixing in conventional low-cost eggs with pricier organic ones."

"The organic industry has been growing in part by promoting the demonstrably false claim that its products are more nutritious than conventional varieties."

"The most recent mega-study, examining 237 scientific reports over the past 50 years, evaluated the nutrient content of organic and conventional foods. Researchers at Stanford University concluded that organically and conventionally produced foodstuffs are nutritionally comparable."

"Organic promoters also ignore the sustainability contradictions at the heart of their passion. Although organic farming may be environmentally benign when producing small quantities for regional markets, it is precarious on a large scale."

From +Ethical Corporation

Organic food – What is an ‘organic’ label really worth? | Ethical Corporation

Organic food – What is an ‘organic’ label really worth? By Jon Entine on Jul 12, 2013. Consumers are willing to pay a premium for organic products, but the realities can mean you get little more than a psychological boost for your buck. A feel good purchase. Supermarkets in North America and …

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