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Organic Labeling

Posted March 18, 2017 12:00 AM by M-ReeD
Pathfinder Tags: diet Farming food organic pesticides

People subscribing to an all-organic lifestyle will be the first to tell you all about the benefits associated with the diet: improved overall health and wellness, exposure to more nutrients, reduced pesticide exposure, support of local farms and businesses, no antibiotic exposure, no preservatives, etc.

Essentially, living this lifestyle might entitle you to make self-satisfying claims about an all-organic diet. (Stop telling us what to do, Gwyneth Paltrow!)

However, living an organic lifestyle will not, as it turns out, save you or the planet, according to a recent study conducted by researchers from the University of British Columbia.

Because the word “organic” is automatically associated with words like “natural” and “fresh,” we assume that we are doing something beneficial for our health and the planet by ingesting these superior products. But there is a subtext to organic labels. A subtext that might upset super-humans believing their body-temples haven’t ingested anything that isn’t “natural.”

In order for a product to be labeled organic by the USDA, only 95% of the ingredients must be strictly organic, leaving room for a small percentage of non-organic materials to slip their way into our systems. Farmers are allowed to treat organic crops with natural pesticides, some being as dangerous as the synthetic pesticides used to treat conventionally-grown crops. (See copper sulfate, popular among organic farmers.)

Also interesting is that there is very little evidence to support the claims that eating organically will imbue you with special health benefits over someone existing on a non-organic diet.

In addition to the labeling issues, organic foods are more likely to give food poisoning (ASAP Science) with 10% containing traces of E. coli (food poisoning bacteria). There is also a higher incidence of food recall with organic foods (1% of all food is recalled with 7% of that being organic).

Ultimately, despite the hidden issues concerning organic food labeling, organic foods are 47% more expensive than conventional foods. Not exactly a practical diet suited for the masses.

Why is an organic diet more expensive than a traditional diet? The study—which looked across 17 critical factors for farming, including: yield, impact on climate change, farmer livelihood, and consumer health—found that organic farming uses more land to produce the same yield as conventional farms. Not only is this more costly, it also leads to increased greenhouse gases and water shortages.

While I am not arguing that everyone give up their organic diets—after all, there are benefits to organic farming, the most obvious being that consumers have more control and knowledge over how their food is produced—I am simply suggesting that the next time a smug, Paltrow-esqe organic super-human self-righteously insists that they are healthier than you, you might point them to this blog—or to the more reliable literature out there that poses the argument far more eloquently.

Are you swayed by organic labels?

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Guru

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#1

Re: Organic Labeling

03/18/2017 1:11 PM

Our ancestors once lived on 100% organic diets with holistic health management and physically active lifestyles.

Yet they were lucky to live past age 40 for it.

Hmmm.

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#2

Re: Organic Labeling

03/18/2017 2:31 PM
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#3
In reply to #2

Re: Organic Labeling

03/18/2017 4:29 PM

Few things in life are ever as profitable as self justified self riotous ignorance.

If it sounds good and has a high price tag on it some people will kill themselves to justify its worth it before they will admit they got took with a fancy name and an unjustified price tag.

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Guru

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#4
In reply to #2

Re: Organic Labeling

03/18/2017 4:37 PM

Would you rather eat vegetables fertilized with chemicals or cow poop?

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#11
In reply to #4

Re: Organic Labeling

03/21/2017 10:10 AM

Depends on what the cow ate; after everything is said and done, you're going to end up with the cow's "leftovers"

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#5

Re: Organic Labeling

03/19/2017 4:29 AM

All depends on the food. I can eat organic celery, but others have too sharp a taste.

Milk tastes much better organic, others are too far processed, even tasting watered-down.

Most of the higher price for organic is due to the way other foods have been produced to reduce costs regardless of taste or texture.

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#6
In reply to #5

Re: Organic Labeling

03/19/2017 11:16 AM

I grew up on a dairy farm and drank raw milk, but had rickets in High School. Now I drink soy milk.

http://www.motherjones.com/media/2014/04/milk-hormones-cancer-pregnant-cows-estrogen

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#10
In reply to #6

Re: Organic Labeling

03/21/2017 4:45 AM

When you say you drank raw milk, do you mean without the added vitamin D?

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#12
In reply to #10

Re: Organic Labeling

03/21/2017 11:39 AM

I mean unhomogenized, unpasteurized, no added vitamin D or anything else.

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#13
In reply to #12

Re: Organic Labeling

03/21/2017 3:36 PM

Think that might have contributed to rickets?

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#14
In reply to #13

Re: Organic Labeling

03/21/2017 3:49 PM

Of course. I began to go shirtless outside (even when there was snow on the ground) to get vitamin D. I think that was what greatly improved my bow legs. Vitamin D is essential to absorbing calcium.

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#16
In reply to #5

Re: Organic Labeling

04/25/2017 9:39 AM

Organic milk is more processed than regular milk. See here

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#17
In reply to #16

Re: Organic Labeling

04/25/2017 9:46 AM

'More' how? Looks like organic milk only heated a required 2 to 4 seconds as opposed around at least 4 to 7 times as long for regular.

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#18
In reply to #17

Re: Organic Labeling

04/25/2017 11:13 AM

Apparently, you only saw what you wanted to see.

'The process that gives the milk a longer shelf life is called ultrahigh temperature (UHT) processing or treatment, in which milk is heated to 280 degrees Fahrenheit (138 degrees Celsius) for two to four seconds, killing any bacteria in it.

Compare that to pasteurization, the standard preservation process. There are two types of pasteurization: "low temperature, long time," in which milk is heated to 145 degrees F (63 degrees C) for at least 30 minutes*, or the more common "high temperature, short time," in which milk is heated to roughly 160 degrees F (71 degrees C) for at least 15 seconds.'

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#19
In reply to #18

Re: Organic Labeling

04/25/2017 11:42 AM

Right. So regular milk gets processed by a process with a required time at least three times as long. So it is processed for a longer time. So it is processed more.

Let's say cake A is baked for 30 minutes at 400° F. and cake B is baked for 1 hour at 300 ° F.

Which cake is baked longer/more? Cake B. Baking is the process, thus we say Cake B is processed more.

Cake A is processed at a higher temp, but not more.

Just consider cryogenic treatment. You aren't going to say something that requires no processing is processed longer than something that requires processing via cryogenic treatment....even though ambient is certainly higher temp.

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#20
In reply to #19

Re: Organic Labeling

04/25/2017 2:24 PM

The higher temperature causes more changes to the milk. It is called ultra-pasteurization. It has less vitamins. I call that more processed. You may call it what you like. <unsubscribe>

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#21
In reply to #16

Re: Organic Labeling

04/25/2017 2:33 PM

Might be that way in the US, but in the U.K., UHT milk must be labelled as such - and is stored out of the fridge until opened. Regular milk, which is stored in the fridge, is pasteurised regardless of whether Organic or not.

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#7

Re: Organic Labeling

03/19/2017 9:00 PM

Aren't all carbon-based foods organic?

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#8
In reply to #7

Re: Organic Labeling

03/20/2017 5:55 PM

I thought so too.

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#15
In reply to #7

Re: Organic Labeling

03/21/2017 9:27 PM

Do you consume seltzer water? I'm not sure if I consider it a 'food', but if you happen to classify it that way, then not all carbon based 'foods' would be organic.

Likewise if you decide to dine on a soupish mix of water and sodium bicarbonate, you would be consuming with carbon that is not organic.

.

Ooooh! If you prefer to have your steak so well done that ir is literally just a char block exclusively comprised of carbon, that would be a carbon based food that is not organic (regardless of whether it was raised on pesticide free grass or not).

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#9

Re: Organic Labeling

03/20/2017 5:55 PM

I think all entertainers and sports figgers should eat exclusive vegan organic food. Drive Tesla's, travel in Gulfstream G8's, and sail in Oyster yachts

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