People who spend a long time arguing for GMOs often spend an equal amount of time arguing that there is no difference between organic foods and conventionally grown foods, whether GMOs or not. The fact of the matter is that there are some significant differences between organic foods and those which are conventionally grown. Below we have compiled some of the most common misconceptions about organic foods and have debunked these myths to help you make the most informed health choices about food for you and your family.
Organic food does not have more nutritional value than conventional food. It is true that in 2012, a study showed that organic foods are not any more nutritious than conventional products and that their composition is virtually the same, however in 2014, a study conducted in the UK showed that organic products have up to 69% more antioxidants than conventional products, as well as other favourable nutritional characteristics.
According to this latest study, organic food must face certain aggressions from the environment that stimulate them to produce certain antioxidants and nutrients in order to protect themselves. Although these studies contradict each other, the more recent study used a more varied and specialised array of tools to evaluate the food, however, controversy prevails.
Organic food pollutes the environment the same amount as conventional food. Organic products, due to the fact that they do not use pesticides or other chemicals, are often considered better for the environment. However, organic food products also use substitutes for these chemicals, such as natural pesticides, but it is known that they pollute less. Some opponent will try to claim that because you need more land to grow organic foods, it is inherently worse for the environment but it is simply not true that you need more land (especially with the growth of vertical organic farms and mass greenhouses) and even if you do use more space, the absence of pesticides and other chemicals still makes organic farming better overall.
Organic food has to be expensive. As the government programs do not subside organic farming, organic farmers have, with organic certification standards added cost of compliance, but the price of organic foods is still increasingly competitive. In terms of dry weight and nutrients, organic food tends to have more in it. Through modern methods of small organic farming, the produce grown organically must be done in enriched soil. Because the agrichemicals may speed up the growth of a plant and the result is more water in the product. That leads to non-organic foods to shrink more when you cook it because of the dissipation of water. But in the end the difference between the prices is very small.
Organic food from other countries have different standards. USDA organic standards must be met worldwide, so USDA hired the certifiers around the world to inspect farms and processing facilities. The EU and Canada also have similar requirements to respect and accept the other two governments certifications. This is all arranged by government and defined by the law. Whether grown in the US or any other country in the world, any food must meet the US organic standards in order to products can be sold as “organic”.