Food for Thought: Conventional Vs. Organics Study and Responses

News media this week picked up a Stanford study that found organically grown food was not any more nutritious than conventionally grown food. Reading between the lines, some of the data analyzed did suggest health benefits for organic foods, like decreased pesticides and antibiotic-resistant bacteria and higher levels of a specific antioxidant. But beyond the argument about whether those attributes constitute a nutritional advantage or not, there is a bigger question of what we mean when we talk about health. At the Ecology Center, we support organic farming practices because it is closer to a holistic concept of health that includes farmworkers, livestock, and the environment, in addition to the health of the consumer. While nutritional value is a consideration in food-purchasing decisions, it is far from the only factor.
For initial reports on the study, head to the Los Angeles Times or New York Times. For some analysis and responses to the study, head to Mother Jones and the Michael Pollan interview on KQED.
[Photo by Indiana Public Media]

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