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suit article does not even scratch the surface of the misleading
framing by the likes of [Organic Valley CEO] George Siemon. The
changes mandated by the appeals court would not eliminate any products,
only the way in which they must be labeled “organic”
or “made from organic.” This was wisely adopted in the
law to avoid the debate now going on about synthetics as ingredients
in food products labeled “organic.” The OFPA [Organic
Food Production Act] clearly avoided the argument by prohibiting
or exempting synthetic ingredients, depending on how a product is
Since it is permitted to disclose a “percentage organic”
on the main display panel, it is clearly not a burden to manufacturers
to not be able to call every one of their products “organic”
and leaves properly the decision of whether to buy with the individual
consumer, who can read the label, not be deceived (even if in a
hurry) and avoids the quagmire—for the NOSB [National Organic
Standards Board]—of listing synthetics. This would be the
same quagmire for congress if the list were to be generated in a
revised statute! There would be an "oops, we forgot one"
every moment going forward.
Only those who wish to deceive customers would want it any other
way. Congress did not intend, nor should they have intended, to
force the NOSB to revisit the FDA’s G.R.A.S. [Generally Recognized
as Safe] list. So they very wisely wrote the statute to avoid it.
To frame the issue—as the Organic Trade Association wants
to—as "What's wrong with baking soda?" is fundamentally
dishonest and violating the most basic tenets of the organic community:
transparency and precautionary.
With respect to the "new herd clause” (80/20 for dairy),
in framing the issue as crucial for "new organic farmers”
evasion of fundamentals also flows. Since all milk is pooled, the
pool no longer meets the standard, thus hurting the preexisting
organic members of the pool and reducing the fair price of milk
for these farmers—all on the altar of growth for a mega-processor,
whether corporate or cooperative—and thereby preventing all
existing organic farmers from enjoying the benefits of rising demand.
Supporting growth should not come at the expense of lowered standards
and pool quality but from incentives derived from other programs,
be they government, volunteer or private!