What’s in Your Organic Food?
by Brian Maslach
What do Campbell’s Soup, Cargill, Coca-Cola, ConAgra, Kraft, Kellogg, General Mills, M&M Mars, and PepsiCo have in common? They now own many of the most popular organic food brands and exert a great deal of control over the organic food industry.
Critic assert that they’ve corrupted the industry with their influence on the National Organic Standards Board, allowing non-organic substances to be labeled as organic all in the name of being able to supply organic foods on the mass level required to meet growing demand. In other words, these giant corporate food companies want to be able to use non-organic substances in their organic foods so they can sell more product.
As corporate membership on the board has increased, so, too, has the number of nonorganic materials approved for organic foods on what is called the National List. At first, the list was largely made up of things like baking soda, which is nonorganic but essential to making things like organic bread. Today, more than 250 nonorganic substances are on the list, up from 77 in 2002.
What’s the problem with only allowing ingredients that are truly organic to be labeled as such? Well, if you’re a big corporate food producer the problem is that it doesn’t allow you to make as much money.
Just as we’ve seen with the corruption in our financial markets courtesy of big banks, big food companies are corrupting our food supply in the name of greater profits.
This is great reason buy from small, independent producers whenever possible.
Image from cookbookman17 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/cookbookman/6092731935/sizes/z/in/photostream/).
Source: The New York Times