The government’s turnaround, from prohibition to permission, came after a USDA program manager was lobbied by the formula makers and overruled her staff. That decision and others by a handful of USDA employees, along with an advisory board’s approval of a growing list of non-organic ingredients, have helped numerous companies win a coveted green-and-white “USDA Organic” seal on an array of products.
Grated organic cheese, for example, contains wood starch to prevent clumping. Organic beer can be made from non-organic hops. Organic mock duck contains a synthetic ingredient that gives it an authentic, stringy texture.
Relaxation of the federal standards, and an explosion of consumer demand, have helped push the organics market into a $23 billion-a-year business, the fastest growing segment of the food industry. Half of the country’s adults say they buy organic food often or sometimes, according to a survey last year by the Harvard School of Public Health.
But the USDA program’s shortcomings mean that consumers, who at times must pay twice as much for organic products, are not always getting what they expect: foods without pesticides and other chemicals, produced in a way that is gentle to the environment.
The market’s expansion is fueling tension over whether the federal program should be governed by a strict interpretation of “organic” or broadened to include more products by allowing trace elements of non-organic substances. The argument is not over whether the non-organics pose a health threat, but whether they weaken the integrity of the federal organic label.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has pledged to protect the label, even as he acknowledged the pressure to lower standards to let more products in.
There are two sides to every story, and Tracey Lambrechs is here to tell the other.
The White House is proposing what would amount to a second estate tax. The one we already have is bad enough.
The New Zealand weightlifter, who was born and competed as a male, has clear advantages over female competitors.
American men have fewer friends than in decades past. We should dedicate time to fostering friendships. They provide an immediate and enduring reward.
Democrats are treating the infrastructure and reconciliation bills as linked, and so should Republicans and everybody else.
College Republican chapters all over the country claim they are being disenfranchised by a president seeking to consolidate power.
The New York Times leaves out several key details from a report that tries to cast a cloud of suspicion over Supreme Court justice Brett Kavanaugh.
The comments came after a shooting disrupted the dinner rush in D.C.'s 14th street commercial district.
The name change for the Indians reinforces the message that the lords of the sport care more about the opinions of liberal commentators than about the fans.
The Rockefellers are using their wealth to disrupt pipeline repairs, making life more difficult for blue-collar workers.
The week of July 19, 2021: regulation, infrastructure, and other clickbait.
As Democrats embrace authority and Republicans push countercultural revolution, we’re reenacting the 1960s with the roles reversed.