Uh Oh organic

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    Jul 30, 2009 6:45 AM GMT
    Ben HirschelerLONDON (Reuters) - Organic food has no nutritional or health benefits over ordinary food, according to a major study published Wednesday.

    Researchers from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine said consumers were paying higher prices for organic food because of its perceived health benefits, creating a global organic market worth an estimated $48 billion in 2007.

    A systematic review of 162 scientific papers published in the scientific literature over the last 50 years, however, found there was no significant difference.

    "A small number of differences in nutrient content were found to exist between organically and conventionally produced foodstuffs, but these are unlikely to be of any public health relevance," said Alan Dangour, one of the report's authors.

    "Our review indicates that there is currently no evidence to support the selection of organically over conventionally produced foods on the basis of nutritional superiority."

    The results of research, which was commissioned by the British government's Food Standards Agency, were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

    Sales of organic food have fallen in some markets, including Britain, as recession has led consumers to cut back on purchases.

    The Soil Association said in April that growth in sales of organic products in Britain slowed to just 1.7 percent in 2008, well below the average annual growth rate of 26 percent over the last decade, following a plunge in demand at the end of the year.

    http://www.reuters.com/article/scienceNews/idUSTRE56S3ZJ20090729

    I am going to go out on a limb and say that I believe most people went for the organic craze (and still are) because of it natural growth process that is devoid of chemicals and gene alteration. I know that I for one eat organic because we support local Illinois farms and their product is good and wholesome. Buying limes, green peppers, onions, carrots, etc... from Wal-mart just never appealed to me, but I understand the budgetary concerns most consumers have. I guess I never looked at organic as healthier just less mass-produced. Maybe I am still naive but the study isn't shocking for me.
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    Jul 30, 2009 7:39 AM GMT
    For me it depends on what's on sale even then I try to buy stuff that's not filled with ingredients I don't recognize.. I think the less altered a food is the better...I don't care what the studies say...the food may not be more nutritious, but it's probably less toxic. Preservatives, antibiotics, hormones, pesticides, that crap's just not good for people.
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    Jul 30, 2009 7:40 AM GMT

    I grew up on canned vegetables so fresh taste great, but when money is tight, I can still cook up something delicious and good for me.
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    Jul 30, 2009 2:31 PM GMT
    I found this article a bit strange. I've never thought, nor have I ever known a fellow buyer of organics who thought, that organic products had more nutrients. The point is that there are less pesticides and artificial ingredients. How could there be more nutrients? Adding things doesn't take away nutrients. I didn't know anybody believed that. This sounds like it was funded in part by traditional produce growers.
  • calibro

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    Jul 30, 2009 2:41 PM GMT
    They leave out the externalities of not going organic... pesticides and all those other lovely chemicals may not harm us directly from the food we eat, but that doesn't mean they won't leach into ground water, contaminate hatcheries, etc...
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    Jul 30, 2009 2:43 PM GMT
    Well, this study sure beat the hell out of that strawman.
  • shirty

    Posts: 290

    Jul 30, 2009 2:46 PM GMT
    muscles4muscles saidI found this article a bit strange. I've never thought, nor have I ever known a fellow buyer of organics who thought, that organic products had more nutrients. The point is that there are less pesticides and artificial ingredients. How could there be more nutrients? Adding things doesn't take away nutrients. I didn't know anybody believed that. This sounds like it was funded in part by traditional produce growers.


    Exactly. This article fails big time. Anyone who buys organic thinking there are more nutrients is delusional... I buy organic to avoid the chemicals.

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    Jul 30, 2009 2:54 PM GMT

    We watched a program the other night about an area of China that used so many pesticides it wiped out the entire bee (and other pollinators) population. They're trying to pollinate pear trees by hand.

    We buy organic for its lack of pesticides, herbicides and fungicides, all used and then nicely sealed onto the produce in some cases with an edible wax or petroleum based coating. (edible petroleum product?)

    Some vegetables, like lettuce are absorbers of these chemicals as they draw them up with ground water. Spray one day, rain the next.






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    Jul 30, 2009 2:56 PM GMT
    I buy organic apple juice for my smoothies because i think it tastes better, other than that I dont do organic. Ever had a grapple? Gene splicing is ftw
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    Jul 30, 2009 2:57 PM GMT

    Everyone should go see

    Food Inc


    you'll be pissed at how much our government has taken to protecting big business to the detriment of our farmers, our land, our ability to make informed choices

    Buy Organic

    Buy Local
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    Jul 30, 2009 3:32 PM GMT
    I tend to buy local if I can. Mass produced 'organic' may contain less exposure to pesticides which I wash off anyway, but standards in the levels of acceptable other 'organic' contaminants (insect parts, fecal matter, etc.) is many times higher.

    That being the case, the difference is cost isn't worth it to me as where I live, the local produce is the cheapest and best for quality and freshness. Second in choice is 'regular' (as in not designated as 'organic') produce at the supermarket. Organic groceries typically cost 50-100% more and are therefor last choice.
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    Jul 30, 2009 3:32 PM GMT
    jakenoh said
    Everyone should go see

    Food Inc


    you'll be pissed at how much our government has taken to protecting big business to the detriment of our farmers, our land, our ability to make informed choices

    Buy Organic

    Buy Local


    I was just about to say this. The movie does an excellent job pointing of the extreme differences between choosing between organic and non-organic.

    Just as fast food changed the way meat and food is produced, (factory farms, heavy subsidies, genetically modified, anti-biotics , etc) the shift back to organic and local is helping to change things back to the way things were before factory farming.
    Not that those things will ever go away, but we need to have options so that we can make responsible (ethical, moral) decisions at the market.
    The food business is pretty shady and making choices based entirely on nutritional value or price (if you have options) is really short sighted.
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    Jul 30, 2009 3:34 PM GMT
    Next your gonna tell me Green is just marketing a catch phrase icon_eek.gif
  • shoelessj

    Posts: 511

    Jul 30, 2009 3:35 PM GMT
    makes me think of that scene in "Harold and Maude" where Ruth Gordon tells young Bud Cort, as she offers him some wine, "It's organic!" (and this was like 1970something)

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    Jul 30, 2009 3:39 PM GMT
    MunchingZombie saidWell, this study sure beat the hell out of that strawman.

    Exactly. Like a couple others have already mentioned with myself, I don't think anyone ever ate organic food because it was so jam-packed with vitamins and nutrients we couldn't get from "plebian" fruits and veggies!
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    Jul 30, 2009 3:47 PM GMT
    Pinny said
    MunchingZombie saidWell, this study sure beat the hell out of that strawman.

    Exactly. Like a couple others have already mentioned with myself, I don't think anyone ever ate organic food because it was so jam-packed with vitamins and nutrients we couldn't get from "plebian" fruits and veggies!


    Next thing you know a report is going to come out saying that the exhaust coming out of conventional cars is pound-for-pound just as pollutant as the exhaust from hybrids.
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    Jul 30, 2009 3:53 PM GMT
    meninlove said
    We watched a program the other night about an area of China that used so many pesticides it wiped out the entire bee (and other pollinators) population. They're trying to pollinate pear trees by hand



    I haven't seen a single bee yet this year.

    Refreshing to see that (almost) no one on this site is fooled by this study's BS.
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    Jul 30, 2009 3:59 PM GMT
    MunchingZombie saidNext thing you know a report is going to come out saying that the exhaust coming out of conventional cars is pound-for-pound just as pollutant as the exhaust from hybrids.

    A new study confirms that gay men, in fact, do like penis.
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    Jul 30, 2009 4:05 PM GMT
    i noticed that after about a month of eating organic, and switching to all whole wheat or multi-grain breads, that i began to eat less. that was something i noticed
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Jul 30, 2009 4:07 PM GMT
    This study was brought to you by the National Corn Growers Association. 'Get the facts, you're in for a sweet surprise.'
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    Jul 30, 2009 4:28 PM GMT
    Pinny said
    MunchingZombie saidNext thing you know a report is going to come out saying that the exhaust coming out of conventional cars is pound-for-pound just as pollutant as the exhaust from hybrids.

    A new study confirms that gay men, in fact, do like penis.


    omg i thought i was the only one!!!! good to know there are others
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Jul 30, 2009 5:18 PM GMT
    muscles4muscles saidI found this article a bit strange. I've never thought, nor have I ever known a fellow buyer of organics who thought, that organic products had more nutrients. The point is that there are less pesticides and artificial ingredients. How could there be more nutrients? Adding things doesn't take away nutrients. I didn't know anybody believed that. This sounds like it was funded in part by traditional produce growers.




    EXACTLY!!!!! As a newbie to organics, I chose to go with organic produce (but not entirely) because of the lack of pesticides, longer shelf-life and the ubelievable quality in flavor over traditional produce. This is most likely from a biased source. I even questioned the 50 year study because organic produce as an industry isn't even that old, so why would they start a study before there was something to compare with?? No one ever claimed that it was more nutritious to eat organic foods.
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Jul 30, 2009 5:24 PM GMT
    Oh yeah...I first read this article on the net yesterday and then I heard it on the news this morning! I think it's getting peddled by big agribusiness. What a damn shame. Where's the nearest Whole Foods?....
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    Jul 30, 2009 5:32 PM GMT
    A large percentage of organic food is not local, is produced by large corporations that also sell non-organic food, and still carries no guarantee that pesticides are not used. Organic is a sales term, not a quality term; the US requires no truth-in-labeling for organic food.

    The U.S. is importing lots of organic food from China, and there's no guarantees that the food is any cleaner there (http://www.worldwatch.org/node/4998).

    You want organic? Grow it yourself.
  • jrs1

    Posts: 4388

    Jul 30, 2009 5:42 PM GMT

    I'm an organic food(s) addict. the proverbial nail and head were struck with the " devoid of chemicals " line ... or so we hope as such. again, what some do - with reason - is not necessarily what everyone does or should do. organic is the " just right porridge " for me.