The Road To Hell
Wednesday, March 04, 2009 | Author: eventer79
Yup, we all know what it is paved with. And marketers know we are only too eager to run full-bore down it, brimming to overflowing with the VERY BEST of intentions, wearing a T-shirt that says how awesome we are (cause what good is doing good if you can't brag about it to all your friends??).

One huge paving stone on this road is "organic". Damn, but so many of these products piss me off -- companies have done a phenomenal job of convincing people that if they only buy "organic," not only will they be saving the world, but they will be healthier, stronger, faster, smarter, or somesuch crap.

Don't take their word for it.

Conditions which must be met to obtain the "organic" label vary widely by interpretation and seeing that label on a product actually guarantees very little. "Organic" dry cleaners in New York were recently called out -- folks dropping off their clothes at these businesses thought they were being good environmental stewards. Turns out that the dry cleaners were still using the same toxic chemicals to dry clean (which by they way, is never actually a DRY process, your clothes still get wet, they just use less water), but were using the label because the chemicals were technically "organic" compounds, i.e. had carbon in them. Nice.

An article today in the New York Times very accurately states, "Some shoppers want food that was grown locally, harvested from animals that were treated humanely or produced by workers who were paid a fair wage. The organic label doesn’t mean any of that." And that is 100% true.

You could stuff a cow in a crate, never clean its stall, beat it with a stick, employ unpaid slaves to keep it alive, beat THEM with a stick, and still get an "organic" meat label after slaughter as long as you didn't use antibiotics on the cow.

"Organic" does not mean safe either. 100% of the "organic" chicken supply is infected with salmonella. HELLO! ANTIBIOTICS WERE INVENTED FOR A REASON! Just look at the latest peanut recall -- this stuff was certified "organic" peanut butter. But it was full of salmonella bacteria, has killed 7 people and sickened at least 700 more. The plant making it did not even HAVE a health certificate. But hey, it was "organic," so you can still get people to pay a 300% markup on the stuff.

Use your heads, wanderers, and don't waste your money on an inflated sense of self-righteousness. Are all "organic" products bad? Of course not -- but neither are they all created equal. Stop and think what that label REALLY means before you purchase something and don't take it as a carte blanche that it MUST be better.

If you want to make food choices that WILL make a difference, grow your own garden. Don't eat seafood. Buy produce from a farmer you know -- local co-ops are becoming more common and allow you to get to know the farm your food comes from and the practices used there. As always, keep your eyes and ears open and don't trust anyone who works in advertising to tell you what is better for you and what is better for the world we live in!
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On March 5, 2009 at 3:57 PM , lifeshighway said...

I've never fallen for the organic marketing trick but I would wear the t-shirt.