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Organic: Food Justice for the 99% (Response to Time Magazine/Dr. Oz denigration of organic consumers)

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Dr. Oz in Time Magazine slanders Families Who Choose Safe, Organic Food for Their Children


As Americans become increasingly aware of the story behind conventional foods--the ecologically destructive monoculture fields, the petrochemical fertilizers, the toxic pesticides and dangerous fumigants--the agrochemical industry has launched an all-out media offensive against the booming organic industry. 

 

The agrochemical industry's communications specialists have apparently found willing partners in major nationwide media outlets like The New York Times and Time magazine, which have recently published articles discouraging people from buying organic foods.  The message is nearly always the same, as industry-friendly researchers and reporters downplay the role and harm caused by agricultural chemicals and focus instead on the differences between a handful of common nutrients.  Despite overwhelming scientific evidence to the contrary, the conclusion is always that organic foods are not worth the extra price because the nutritional differences are minimal.

 

First, we must set the record straight.  Scientific studies show that milk from pastured cows contains higher levels of beneficial fats.  Beef from grass-fed cattle and eggs from pastured hens are lower in cholesterol and saturated fat and higher in healthy omega-3 fatty acids and Vitamins A and E.  Organic strawberries and tomatoes contain more healthy antioxidants.  These are all undisputed facts laid out in a myriad of published, peer-reviewed scientific papers.

 

Consumers increasingly turn to organic and grass-based foods, based on this scientific evidence that has been reported in magazines, including Time,  in recent years.  Now, the Dec 3rd issue of Time mindlessly repeats the agribusiness mantra: "Nutritionally, an egg is an egg."  Milk is milk. And canned peas, with toxic pesticide residues, heated to extreme temperatures during processing, and then placed in a container lined with a suspected endocrine disruptor, are just as healthy as those for sale at a farmer's market, picked fresh from a local field just hours ago.

 

The purpose of these media reports and stories seems to be to pull Americans away from thoughtful discourse about our food and back to blissful ignorance.  Concern over pesticides, animal welfare, fostering local economies, and pollution turn people toward organic and local foods--and that's bad for business for the chemical and industrial farming industries.  No wonder they want us all to look at an egg, whether produced on a factory farm or laid by a free-range, pastured hen, and see nothing more.

 

The paternalistic message--to shut up and eat our food--is no longer working.  Americans are no longer ignoring the mounting scientific evidence that pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, hormones, antibiotics and other drug residues are harming us, even at extremely low levels, and especially our children. 

 

This scientific evidence about pesticides' harmful effects, most recently reviewed by the American Academy of Pediatrics and covered in the latest issue of Pediatrics, will continue to be a major driving force behind the booming success and growth of the organic food movement. 

 

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http://www.cornucopia.org
I work for The Cornucopia Institute. We are a non-profit that works to protect sustainable/organic food and small-scale farming. We often write press releases surrounding what is happening in the industry and what our research discovers. You can (more...)
 

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