Organic in Name Only

By Analiese Paik

I promised I’d never get snarky or tell people what to do on this website, but rules were made to be broken (yes, technically I’ve broken them before). So here it is – you have a choice in buying real organic food or food that’s organic in name only. What do I mean by “in name only”? The producer appears to have no soul, no passion, no core value to produce sustainable food because it’s better for us and the planet. They seem to produce organic food because it’s a smart business decision that’s going to help the company grow, which will make the stock price rise and enrich management and company shareholders, not because it’s their religion. Why else would they be spending huge sums of money trying to defeat California’s Proposition 37, the pro-GMO labeling referendum scheduled for November?

The Right to Know if GMOs are in our food movement has exposed the posers, many of whom are owned by huge, multinational food companies (Horizon, Kashi, Silk, Cascadian Farm, Green & Blacks). Evidence is the list of companies paying for advertising designed to convince Californians to vote AGAINST Proposition 37, the state’s GMO right to know bill that will tip the entire country if passed. The Cornucopia Institute has put together this handy shopping guide infographic and you can also get the most updated list of parent companies from the California Secretary of State’s website. (Godiva what were you thinking?) Check the list of  companies and their products. I’m betting you buy some of them. I’m not buying them anymore. Will you? Purchasing their products is the equivalent of funding their anti-GMO labeling war chest. I’m fed up enough to give up Green & Blacks organic dark chocolate with cherries.

I’ve long purchased Eden Foods, Lundberg Farm and Nature’s Path products for my family along with Nature’s Valley dairy and Late July snacks. These are still top choices since organic is their religion and they’ve each supported Proposition 37. Check the right side of the infographic for more organic producers to love. Where you direct your consumer dollars really matters.

I wish we had organic dairy, grain and snack food producers in CT, but we don’t. So these are the next best thing. As for vegetables, we have the most incredible farm stands, farmers’ markets and CSAs that make buying vegetables anywhere a else a distant second choice.

4 thoughts on “Organic in Name Only”

  1. Of course, there is no peer-reviewed evidence that GMO foods are harmful and lots of evidence that they are not. And sadly, it looks as if there is little advantage in organic foods either.

    • James, the labeling bill is about our right to know what’s in our food. There is no debate over its safety in the proposition. Read it and you will see that it’s about informing the consumer. You can’t argue with me that GMOs are the same as conventional foods, because they’re patented and protected corporate property. Your comment about there being little advantage in organic foods is misguided. It appears that you have chosen to accept the verity of one myopic study to latch onto and have forgetten (discarded?) studies about the environmental benefits and health benefits of not ingesting synthetic pesticides. Have you heard of superweeds and what’s causing them? They’re resistant to glyphosate because it’s been doused on them too many times. Some scientists are now doubting the value of genetic engineering to solve the growing resistance problem. Why don’t you read those studies and accept that there’s a big problem with growing GE food sustainably? Scientific American has a good article out on the topic.

  2. I’ve stopped buying Muir Glen, Larabar, Green & Black’s, Dagoba, and more because of Prop 37. And I’ve discovered it’s not that difficult or inconvenient either. They’re just products, easily replaced with a friendlier, just-as-delicious version, or even, gasp, making it yourself. I’ve got some excellent chocolate suggestions on my blog, reviews and etc. None of them are supporters of Prop 37 as far as my research showed. Check it out: Green & Blacks is NOT all that. We can certainly live (and even thrive) without it!

    • Laura, you’re a hero! Nice work on the blog too. Have you tried Theo? We visited the factory in Seattle in June and really love their story and their chocolates. The Washington State collection is amazing. Thanks for all the great chocolate suggestions.

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