Organic Checkoff

OFARM has consistently maintained that there are better ways to promote "organic" then a federally mandated Organic Research and Promotion Order as proposed by the Organic Trade Association (OTA).  Here is another reason why.

“For Our Common Ground” is a website and Facebook page supposedly dedicated to “helping consumers sort through the myths and misinformation” about the food they buy.  It does have a token organic farmer or two and brief discussions of organic. However, one could read the statements on the website and conclude it is simply a ruse to cover the dismal track record of conventional agriculture regarding food safety and the merits of organic food produced with no pesticides, antibiotics or genetically engineered seeds.

Here are a few examples:

“Organic or traditional, all milk contains the same valuable nutrients.”  Yes, but studies show organic milk to be better and most consumers don’t want hormones and antibiotics used in production of their milk.

“The USDA, which certifies organic production, makes no claims that organically grown food is more nutritious than conventionally grown food. Organic food proves to be only different in how it is grown, handled and processed.” True but independent research shows otherwise.

Then there is an entire article devoted to dispelling the myths of GMO foods that consumers go to the grocery store to buy.  Read that, consumers are mis-informed and need to be told.

Here is another statement:

“Do I need to buy the most expensive food to get the best for my family

  • While organic food prices are often higher than conventional food, there is no difference in nutritional value, according to a review of 400 scientific papers on the health impacts of organic foods, published in the journal Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition.”

The bottom line is that some of the people on this website will viciously attack anyone who challenges the status quo of conventional agriculture and readily op disparage organic.  And there is always a strong defense of GMO’s and Monsanto.

The best part is their by-line:  “Brought to you by America's soybean and corn farmers and their checkoffs.”

Organic checkoff funds could not be used to rebut the false and misleading statements made on this website or any other. The idea of a conversation about food is always welcome.  Using farmer checkoff funds under the guise of a conversation about food to disparage “organic” is very questionable to say the least. For example, there is no discussion of alterative research about the food safety issues surrounding GMO’s and glycophosphates.  The attitude is just “trust us.”  Never mind that the World Health Organization (WHO) recently declared glycophosphates as a probable carcinogen.  

This is just another reason why the OTA proposed checkoff is a very bad idea and a waste of organic farmer’s money.