Skip to comments.Organic food is just a tax on the gullible
Posted on 08/09/2009 1:51:16 AM PDT by Schnucki
There are two reliable ways of telling if you have won an argument. The first is if your disputants switch from discussion of the facts to accusations about motives; the second, more obviously, is if they descend to mere abuse.
Alan Dangour, a nutritionist at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, should therefore feel he has had an encouragingly uncomfortable week. He is the author of a peer-reviewed meta-study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition that concluded, from 50 years of scientific evidence, that so-called organic food was no healthier than conventionally farmed products. By the end of last week Dangour felt as if he had been covered with the brown stuff the organic lobby holds most sacred. He revealed that he had received hate mail and was taken aback by the abusive language used.
Ben Goldacre, an NHS doctor and author of the acclaimed book Bad Science, has had a similar week. In his newspaper column he had taken apart the Soil Associations criticisms of Dangours paper which was funded by Britains Food Standards Agency notably its claim that the health benefits of organic food relating to the absence of pesticides could not be measured by the evidence identified in the FSA paper.
As Goldacre pointed out to the Soil Association: Either you are proposing that there are health benefits which cannot ever be measured. In this case you have faith, which is not a matter of evidence. Or you are proposing that there are health benefits which could be measured, but have not been yet. In which case, again, you have faith rather than evidence. Cue an avalanche of organic
(Excerpt) Read more at timesonline.co.uk ...
I grow my own organic veggies - no tax .
You cannot argue with a true believer.
Just another of the undocumented, “Feel Good” notions that enrich the relatively few while costing the many. Sort of like Global Warming with a lot of the same proponents.
Sounds like he was attacked by the anti-human, anti- meat eating, anti- corporate farm, anti-hunting, anti-capitalist, anti consumerism, gay, vegan, PETA members that hang out at DU.
Never the less, he's right. Organic food is for suckers willing to pay more just for a silly label. 'factory' farm produce is every bit as good as anything Organic. In fact the 'factory' farm stuff is even better! It's much less likely to surprise you with a big fat worm or some other insect curled up inside that nice organic apple, tomato, peach, or whatever you are munching on.
I suppose you could argue that the worm is extra protein, therefore the organic item is better because of it.
If you want good tasting fruits and veggies, buy locally grown seasonal produce from the local farmers or farmers markets. The produce is usually allowed to stay on the vine until ready, then picked fresh daily. Small local farmers also grow more varieties of fruits and vegetables which offers you a wide variety of flavors you never thought existed for these basic garden variety veggies.
Despite all the bad publicity the organic crowd spreads around about conventional farmers and their use of 'dangerous chemicals', most farmers have been growing produce for generations, and know how to manage their fields to prevent insect problems in the first place.
Knowing which plants to plant next to another that is prone to a specific insect infestations acts as a natural insect repellent for example.
If they do need to control an insect problem, many of the remedies used aren't terrible, evil toxic chemicals organic worshipers love to scare people with. A simple soap and water solution gets rid of juice sucking wasps for example, and prevents many forms of fungus and rust strains.
Or a pack of cheap orange kool-aid, sugar and water in a 2 liter plastc pop bottle with the top cut off, inverted and taped back on makes a very effective wasp and hornet trap. There are many simple non-toxic and cheap solutions to common insect problems which local growers use. Soap and water solutions, a little vinegar also prevents common fugal and leaf rust problems. And a regular, old fashioned hoe is still the most widely used weed herbicide.
If a feed does need an occasional general clean up, round up is one of the safest herbicides made. But even then, most fields only require a general clean up every 5 years or less, depending on how diligent the farmer is with their hoe. Preventing weeds from going to seed prevents a lot of work on the next crop.
Any money a farmer can save by avoiding expensive insecticides and herbicides means more money in their pockets, as does using simple non-toxic and cheap home made remedies. Large commercial farmers aren't all that concerned about supplying and competing with local seasonal markets. Because their crops are grown to supply food processing companies, and fresh produce markets a great distances away, the produce is picked early, before they are even ripe. Then they are irradiated to further slow the enzymes which causes the produce to slowly ripen even if it is no longer on the vine.
Bananas, apples, oranges, tomatoes, melons, grapefruit, Kiwi, radish, and a wide variety of other veggies are processed in this matter, shipped to grocery store chains warehouses where they can sit and slowly ripen over the winter months, which is why these places can offer such a wide variety of "fresh" fruits and vegetables over the winter.
Naturally, they just aren't as tasty and juicy as produce matured on the vine, but at least they are available to people living in colder northern places, and they can eat a healthier diet. It wasn't all that long ago where canning and freezing (if you were lucky to have a freezer) were the only options. Irradiation machines and fast, long distance shipping wasn't yet available, nor were better, genetically modified plant varieties producing tastier,longer lasting with slower acting enzymes available.
Of course they also use more insecticides and herbicides because their fields are just too large to make manual labor feasible, even if the workers are low paid illegal immigrants.
That is the only instance in which "organic" labeled veggies are better, at least taste wise. But produce designed to withstand long storage periods are getting and better and better all the time. Often "organic" stuff sitting on the shelves looks pretty pathetic in comparison.
Besides, thanks to the commercial application of GPS, farmers can precisely apply fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides so there is essentially very little runoff of these agricultural chemicals, which means vastly improved water quality downstream from the farm. And it also means residue from these chemicals are very minimal, too.
We have a few here, as soon as some animal rights story pops up posters you never hear of pop out of the bushes, so to speak.
It wasn't all that long ago where canning and freezing (if you were lucky to have a freezer) were the only options.
As soon as the government stops subsidizing factory farming, then the anti-corporate farm types will rejoice. As an ex certified organic farmer, it troubles me that proponents of capitalism and liberty are bad-mouthing organic. Locally grown is a good alternative to organic, but then in a free market, it is and should be buyer beware. When we let the federal government onto our farms, we allowed the devil in the back door.
Most BIG farmers are that way because of the commodities markets and the “get big or get out” mentality of our government. And please recall that “organic” was a grass roots movement that has been co-opted by the feds. That alone is reason enough to find another avenue for farmers to sell “naturally grown” foods.
And I hope that you never have to suffer a large CAFO put next to you.
They studied nutritive values. They’re the same. Duh. But organic isn’t about nutrition, it’s about how the produce is grown, and what it’s treated with. Examined from that standpoint, there is quite a difference. Which is probably why they didn’t examine it from that standpoint.