October 15, 2012
So Just How Organic Are Our Organics?
Organic food is all the rage. By definition organic farming is providing food free of chemical pesticides, herbicides, fertilizers, or any other artificial agents including genetically modified seeds. Strict government regulations give the consumer peace of mind that what they are buying in the store is almost identical to what they would be growing in their backyard given they had the time, land and patience to do it themselves. The problem is, no item mass produced can give steady enough yields for it to be completely and utterly organic yet still remotely affordable and dependable. There is always risk in farming, whether it be the chemicals in the pesticides, the weather, or the surplus of nitrogen in the soil which is used to avoid using pesticides in the first place. So, there must be some chemicals used to keep the bugs out, but who is keeping track and how well? There are bound to be loopholes and big companies and corporations are finding them. Big corporations are monopolizing organic farming and using the high expenditure rate as cover up to increase profit. The profits could be remarkable in organics, Rodale.com reports in the article “Hottest Products on Supermarket Shelves” (by Leah Zerbe) that, “the organic food industry grew nearly 5% last year,” and “78% of all U.S. families are buying some organic products.” This small fact alone proves that organic farming is bound to become a very promising industry. The neon sign for money hasn't gone unnoticed by big corporations like Kellogs, Heinz and Kraft. This is why Stephanie Strom from the New York Times published the article “Has 'Organic' been Oversized?”. Strom begins the article with Mr. Potter, “one of the last little big men left in organic food” (Web). Mr. Potter is the owner of Eden Foods, a major organic wholesale and food market, and one of the few independent business owners left that has not been bought out by...
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