|Quality - Food, Bio, Organic and Natural Products|
|Quality - Foods, Bio, Organic and Natural Products|
|Food Quality : Organic vs Conventional -|
|Nutritional value - Some organic advocates claim that organic food is more nutritious.
It is important to note that the main objective of organic agriculture is to produce food that does not degrade soil and the surrounding environment over long periods of time (known as sustainability).
The goal has never been to produce food that is higher in specific nutrients, but producing more wholesome food in general is often cited as one reason for farming organically. Increased soil quality, greater attention to quality, and selection of crop varieties for nutrition and taste instead of size, appearance, and shipping characteristics are claimed to be reasons for higher nutrient density of organic foods. In some cases, this has happened, generally due to conventionally grown produce being higher in water.|
|Organically grown potatoes, oranges, and leafy vegetables have more vitamin C than conventionally grown products. Phenolic compounds are also found in significantly higher concentrations in organic foods, and these may provide antioxidant protection against heart disease and cancer. - |
- Still isolated bits of research suggest that conventional agricultural practices are degrading food quality. A study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition in 2004, entitled Changes in USDA Food Composition Data for 43 Garden Crops, 1950 to 1999 , compared vegetables analysed in 1950 and in 1999, and found noticeable decreases in six of 13 nutrients examined (the six were: protein, calcium, phosphorus, iron, riboflavin and ascorbic acid). Percentage reductions ranged from 6% for protein to 38% of riboflavin, although when evaluated on a per-food or per-nutrient level, usually no distinguishable changes were found. Reductions in calcium, phosphorus, iron and ascorbic acid were also found. The authors suggested that the differences probably reflect changes in cultivated varieties between 1950 and 1999, in which there may have been trade-offs between yield and nutrient content.
|However, whether organic foodstuffs have a higher nutrient content is still debatable. Studies have shown no clear, consistent results, and those that have suffer from significant experimental design flaws, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Further, the FAO found that in some crops, such as wheat, there appears to be a trade-off: in conventionally farmed wheat the levels of protein are higher, but the lower levels in organic materials are offset by gains in alpha-amylase and sugar contents. - Also, much is still unclear or unknown in nutrional science.|
|Taste - Many claim that organic food tastes better. This is primarily referred to regarding fresh food.|
It is possible that organic food taste better simply because it is fresher. Because organic farms tend to be smaller, they often sell their products closer to the point of harvest. Thus, organic fruits and vegetables taste more "farm fresh" than comparable conventional produce.
However, organic foods might also have more flavor because organic farmers often breed with taste instead of marketability as the primary factor. Conventional tomatoes, for example, are often bred to be perfectly red and round, to match the ideal appearance of a tomato. They are also bred to resist damage in transport and storage, for a longer shelf-life. This means that taste is an attribute that has a lower priority. In addition to crop diversity and selection practices, organic farming emphasizes soil nutrition, which can positively influence the taste of the food. Tests by the United Nations FAO demonstrated that some apples, specifically the "Golden Delicious" variety, have higher flavonoid counts when grown organically. This suggests that they do have more flavour.
Some foods, such as bananas, are picked when unripe, then artificially induced to ripen using a chemical (such as propylene or ethylene) while in transit, possibly producing a different taste. - The issue of ethylene use in organic food production is contentious; opponents claiming that its use only benefits large companies, and opens the door to weaker organic standards.
|Food quality - Although organic food is a topic in its own right, there are concerns related specifically to the quality of raw, fresh food. Without conclusive science either way, some organic supporters believe that the overall nutritional and health-promoting value of food is compromised by chemical-farming methods. This involves areas like micronutrients and trace elements, plant physiology, the way plants grow and the process of human nutrition. The common sense appeal is that food grown in unnatural, sheltered, chemically assisted ways isn't as "good" for people as "naturally grown" food, as some things are different or missing. The counter-argument is that, by currently accepted standards of food science, there has been no demonstration of a functional difference between organically and conventionally produced food, and that assisted food is actually healthier and thus, more nutritious. Some critics point out organic food could be less safe than non-organic food, by increasing the risk of exposure to biological contaminants and food-borne diseases. But the main problem for Food contamination is the manipulation with good higienic standards, and good cleaning habits will be healthy. In particular health concerns are related to the use of manure, well known for carrying human pathogens and presence of mycotoxins from molds. One large, influential French study, evaluating organic and conventional food during 1999-2000, warned that biological toxins in certain organic products (apples, wheat) should be closely monitored - .|
|Food contamination is usually caused by unhygienic handling and storage, including use of contaminated water, which can occur on-farm, in transit, and at the point of preparation. And there is no general evidence of food contamination being caused or increased by organic farming practices.|
|FAO Food Safety and Quality as Affected by Organic Farming, Twenty Second FAO Regional Conference for Europe, 24-28 Jul-2000.|
|Ehp Niehs Nih US NIEHS Goverment studies|
|Children's Health - A 2001 NIH study demonstrated that children fed organic diets experienced significantly lower organophosphorus pesticide exposure than children fed conventional diets. Additionally, in 2005 the EPA's "Guidelines for Carcinogen Risk Assessment" showed that children receive 50% of their lifetime risks of cancer during their first two years of life|
|EPA Guidelines for Carcinogen Risk Assessment|
|These studies and others like it have helped spur a growing organic baby food trend in the United States. Mothers are more and more hesitant to feed their children potentially dangerous food, given that their small bodies are especially vulnerable to toxins.|
|Nutritional quality of organic food: shades of grey or shades of green? Proceedings of the Nutrition Society - Professor Williams, Christine - 2002 -|
|Mounting Evidence that Organic Food is Healthier|
|Nutrition Food Facts and Studies from the Government|
|Organic Diets Significantly Lower Children's Dietary Exposure to Organophosphorus esticides. Environmental Health Perspectives - Lu, Chensheng, et. al. (2006).|
|Food Quality Organic and Conventional|
|Organic Food Benefits|
|Food Contamination Pesticides and Transgenic|
Fertilizer Food Quality 2022