AUDIO: Organic food may not be what you think
OSOYOOS, BRITISH COLUMBIA
October 7, 2010
• Critic says standards are not enforced
• ‘International brokers and traders are sort of ruling the organic industry’
Common beliefs about organic food are commonly wrong, says Mischa Popoff, a former organic inspector and now author of the new book, “Is it Organic?” that he says is the “inside story” of the organic industry.
“What’s happening now is that a lot of international brokers and traders are sort of ruling the organic industry and they’ve watered the standards down,” says Mr. Popoff. “They’re importing massive amounts – literally hundreds of millions of dollars of allegedly organic food from places like China, Mexico and Brazil.”
He says that testing food production to make sure it’s held to organic standards has morphed into making sure paperwork is properly completed.
“There’s not a single test done and there are no surprise inspections,” says Mr. Popoff. “You’ve got pages and pages of regulations but there’s no testing so it doesn’t matter what other regulations are.”
(Mischa Popoff talks about his views of the organic food world in today’s CVBT Audio Interview. Please left click on the link below to listen now or right click on the link to download the MP3 audio file for later listening.)
Mr. Popoff contends that being organic is no longer about farming fields but more about filling forms. And, he says, as far as government and urban activists are concerned, farmers, the environment and consumers are mere afterthoughts.
“The honest organic farmers here in North America – in Canada and the United States – they’re facing unfair competition from abroad,” Mr. Popoff says.
About the book: “Is it Organic?” (Polyphase Communication, September 2010)