CNN published this provocative headline yesterday on Jack Cafferty's blog:
“What does it mean if organic food is no healthier than regular food?”
They weren't the only ones to run this story. It's been all over the news.
Here's an excerpt from Jack Cafferty's blog:
Organic food is no healthier or more nutritious than regular food. But it is more expensive.
That's according to a study commissioned by the British government and published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Researchers looked at 50,000 studies conducted over 50 years — and found no significant differences in the foods. They focused on a wide range of crops and livestock raised and marketed under organic standards.
Sounds like an important study doesn't it? 50,000 studies over 50 years… published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
What I love is the comments he's been getting:
Lynne writes: It means you are ignoring the effects of pesticides on the land and on the animals, the runoff into our rivers and oceans, and the efforts of family farmers over the agribusiness corporations. I'd frankly rather pay more money to the small, responsible farmer. There are too few of them left in America.
Casey writes: I'll always be willing to pay more for produce that isn't treated with environment-harming chemicals and for meat that came from animals treated a little more humanely. Not everything is about us, Jack.
Susan writes: The adverse effects of pesticides on the human endocrine system are well documented. So while non-organic food may have the same nutritional value as organic food, it sure has lots and lots of ‘extras'! Pesticides and heavy metals, to name just a few. Just another study by Global Corporate America to reassure the public that our food and water supplies are safe. Couldn't be further from the truth.
Sean writes: I'd like to know what the classification of health is. If it's vitamins and minerals in food then no, I don't believe “regular food” is any more healthy. However, if healthier is eating food without antibiotics, hormones and pesticides, then how can argue organic food is not healthier?
Benjamin writes: Consumers don't buy organic to get better nutrition! I try to buy organic for certain types of produce knowing that I will be putting less pesticides into my body. Though maybe not more nutritional it IS healthier! Publicity of this study will only side track the public into thinking there is no difference at all.
I could go on — that's just a tiny sampling of the comments. If you want to read more, or add your own, go check out the post.
I also wanted to share with you the abstract from the study that was done.
What's curious to me is the way Jack Caffrerty phrased his question to his readers, “What does it mean if organic food is no healthier than regular food?” As though it's a fact.
I'm glad to see people questioning what they see on the news and read in the paper. Let's bring back critical thinking skills!
Argh — this is why I don't watch the news. I can't stand the illogical way “facts” are reported.
What Do You Think?
Do you buy organic? Why or why not? What do you think about the way the media reports the news? Are you optimistic or pessimistic about the current status of our food system? Please share your comments below.
Photo credit: A Herd of Jerseys by Cooking Up A Story on Flickr