A Response Regarding the Stanford Study on Organic Food

This is from Jeff Adair and what he was able to find in regards to the Stanford Study on Organic food.   Thanks Jeff for sharing this with us!

Many of you have asked me about the recent organic food study done by Stanford. Headlines like this have appeared in most media outlets:

Benefits of organic meat and produce vague, research says

This would seem to indicate that we’ve been duped into spending a lot more of our dollars on food that really isn’t any better than conventional food. Whenever I read something controversial like this I like to follow the money. So I did some quick checking and found these nuggets from Tony Cartalucci of PrisonPlanet.com (the full article is copied below).

“This most recent anti-organic food campaign began with a Stanford study out of its Center for Health Policy (a subsidiary of Stanford’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies), examining the nutritional value of organic food versus non-organic. Food with pesticides on it had nearly the same nutritional value, the study claims, as organic food – completely skipping over the whole point of eating organic.”

“According to FSI’s 2011 Annual Report (page 38, .pdf) Agricultural giant Cargill, British Petroleum (BP), the Bill & Malinda Gates Foundation (heavily invested in both Cargill and big-agri giant Monsanto), the Ford Foundation, Google, Goldman Sachs, the Smith Richardson Foundation, and many other corporate-financier, Fortune 500 special interests.”

“Update : Agricultural giant Cargill is in fact in direct partnership with Stanford University. Specifically,it has donated at least 5 million dollars for the creation of a Center on Food Security and the Environment (FSE). The center is allegedly “committed to helping feed a growing population while preserving the planet’s natural resources.” This will presumably be done through the use of patented Cargill biotechnology, have nothing to do with actually “helping feed” anything but Cargill’s bottom line and corporate-financier domination of the global food supply, while Stanford simply leverages its reputation and credibility to give cover and badly needed legitimacy to Cargill’s methods and agenda.”

Obviously Cargill and Monsanto would stand to benefit from a study that questions the value of organic food. Coincidentally (or not) CA is voting on Prop 37 in Nov, which requires labeling of GMO foods. Timing is everything.

To continue the exercise, though, we should look at Prop 37 funding, and here’s an article about that:

http://www.kcet.org/news/ballotbrief/elections2012/propositions/prop-37-funding-genetically-engineered-food.html

Obviously, food and agriculture are big business and the issues very complicated. But that’s precisely why you can’t take headlines at face value.

And just in case you feel this is all a bunch of foodie/nutrition/activist mumbo-jumbo that doesn’t apply to “regular people”, I’d like to end with a quote from Wendell Berry:

“Eating is an agricultural act” – when was the last time you didn’t eat?

Jeff Adair
http://jadair.myzijastory.com
blog – www.jafoodrant.com
fb – http://on.fb.me/tZ8r4s
follow me on twitter!  adairj
learn – http://theweightofthenation.hbo.com 

Cargill and Others Behind anti-Organic “Stanford Study”

Tony Cartalucci
PriosnPlanet.com
Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

Harry Wallop of the London Telegraph ends his anti-organic food editorial with the following sentence:

“Tomorrow, the baby is going to get an extra dollop of pesticide-sprayed carrots.”

Whether or not Wallop is as brain-addled as he leads on to being, the point of his editorial is to encourage similar attitudes amongst the Telegraph’s readership, attempting to manipulate public perception in the wake of a recent Stanford “study” regarding organic food.

Whether or not readers of the Telegraph will put their own health and that of their children at risk for the sake of protecting big-agri’s bottom line and the faltering paradigm that big-agri products are safe for human consumption simply because Harry Wallop thinks its good to feed his baby with pesticide-sprayed carrots remains to be seen.

The London Telegraph, when not fabricating news to support England’s latest imperial adventures overseas, is at the forefront of many of the largest corporate-financier funded lobbying campaigns. Recently, someone has splurged, and splurged big on anti-organic food lobbying built atop a suspect Stanford study.

A Flawed “Study”

When entire news cycles are dominated by headlines built on a single university study, with editorials attempting to hammer in big-agri talking points, a lobbying effort is clearly afoot.

Two news cycles have already been dedicated to trashing organic food. Organic food is free of pesticides and genetic manipulation, both of which are proven to cause learning disabilities, decreased IQ, sterility, and a myriad of other health problems including a wide variety of cancers.

This most recent anti-organic food campaign began with a Stanford study out of its Center for Health Policy (a subsidiary of Stanford’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies), examining the nutritional value of organic food versus non-organic. Food with pesticides on it had nearly the same nutritional value, the study claims, as organic food – completely skipping over the whole point of eating organic.

Indeed, the nutritional value would be similar – but the entire point of eating organic is not because of vastly superior nutritional value, but to avoid the “extras” included with products from big-agri corporations.

The Stanford study intentionally dismisses concerns regarding the presence of pesticides by simply claiming levels were within legal tolerances. No discussion was made on whether legal tolerances equated to safe tolerances, nor was there any mention made of the harmful effects of genetically modified organisms (GMO) or other controversial food additives found in non-organic food products.

So why the strawman argument?

A Corporate-funded “Study”

The Stanford Center for Health Policy states the following  on its own website:

“The Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI) relies on support from its friends, as well as from national and international foundations and corporations, for the funding of the Institute’s research, teaching and outreach activities.”

The Center for Health Policy is a subsidiary of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI). So who are these “friends,” national and international foundations and corporations funding the research of FSI and its subsidiary, the Stanford Center for Health Policy

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