How many "skeptical" atheists on here buy into the organic movement and for the love of science, why? or why not?
Organic is healthier? Better for the environment? I don't buy it. To me, it's not worth the extra cost to buy something just because everyone seems to think it's better. When we start talking about health and the environment we seem to get carried away and abandon critical thinking.
Here are some links:
Being organic or not has no relation to the taste of a food—when it comes to flavor, some organic food is great, most is ok, and some is pretty poor. Same goes for normal foods. There is no evidence that organic tastes better than normal food. At least there hasn't been any objective double bllind tests on the taste issue, as of yet. All claims are subjective and anecdotal, which is of course useless in science.
A 12-month stuudy based on 50 years' worth of collected evidence concluded that "there is no good evidence that consumption of organic food is beneficial to health in relation to nutrient content."
I think people link the supposed better health claims to better taste, as many reports of them continue to surface in the press, which probably explains why many are convinced that organic food really does taste better.
There is a study that show that cancer cells have an emzyme that does not seem to do anything.
Organic fruit and vegetables that have not been treated with a chemical fungicide produces a natural fungicide (don't remember the name of it). This naturally produced fungicide seems to trigger the enzyme in the cancer cell killing the cell. More research is being done at this time.
From what I've read in other places, a lot of people supposedly buy organic because they believe it is helping the environment. There are certain methods, such as crop rotation, which help keep the soil fertile and reduce or eliminate the need to raze more land for crops, but these methods are not strictly used on organic farms. The drawback is that organic tends to have lower crop yields, so if we want more, we have to plant more. The best way to help the environment is to buy local. Local foods aren't shipped very far and thus save energy (and they tend to be fresher).
That natural fungicide thing sounds interesting and we can probably single out the gene responsible for the production of it. Some people seem to be afraid of genetically modified foods. I find that similar to being afraid of microwaved food.
I wonder what other natural defenses these plants will develop in the absence of pesticides (which some organic farms still use "natural" pesticides). Because natural is always better, like arsenic, tornados and tobacco.
I buy organic if it's on sale, that's about it. Organic foods have been shown to have higher levels of certain nutrients, but it's not much of a difference if you are eating the right amount of vegetables to begin with. As long as you are eating the right amount of vegetables, even if they have some levels of pesticides in them, you are still a lot less likely to get cancer than if you don't eat enough vegetables. If all we had was organic, the poor would be even less likely to get good amounts of vegetables due to the increased price. This reminds me of the nonsense DDT ban. DDT saved more lives from malaria than it killed from causing cancer. It was cheap and effective.
It seems "organic" is a way to make more money for less product, all under the guise of "helping the environment" or "being healthier" because it's "all natural".
What's the amount of artificial food coloring someone has to drink in order to get cancer? Enough to drown a whale?