Your Organic Food Might Be Imported From CHINA. Here’s What You MUST Know
Those who make it a point of purchasing organic produce and other foods usually do so for a couple reasons. One reason is for better nutrition and health, as USDA-certified organic foods are grown under strict guidelines that improve soil quality, eliminate harmful pesticides and, therefore, make the food more nutritionally dense and safer to eat. The other reason is to help the environment through organic agricultural practices. As the popularity and desire for organic foods grows, so does the risk of fraudulent products that claim to be organic, but really aren’t. When our food comes from international sources, we can’t be sure how they’re regulated. Here are some things you must be aware of when buying organic.
China Has Environmental Hazards
Foods from China are particularly dangerous. Organic foods can be farmed in polluted areas while still labeled organic, and China is currently undergoing an environmental crisis in many areas, as these photos demonstrate. The farmlands surrounding this tile factory in Dingshu are no longer suitable for growing crops because of heavy metal contamination. Chemical plants in Zhoutie have polluted waterways and contaminated locally produced rice and wheat with cadmium.
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Since organic certification does not address environmental sources of pollution such as contaminated water, or heavy metals including cadmium, lead, mercury this leaves consumers vulnerable to purchasing these harmful foods that may have been grown in such conditions. Many Chinese have stopped eating local product because they know about the contaminated farmland. In 2007, the Ministry of Land and the National Bureau of Statistics conducted a nationwide soil survey, but the results weren’t published until 2013. The survey reported that about 16.1 percent of China’s soil and about 19.4 percent of farmland were contaminated.
Check For Farming Regulations
Some places, mainly China have almost no standards or regulations for what they label as “organic” so there’s very little keeping these hazardous crops from being exported to other countries while sold organic and enticing customers with their cheap prices. It’s probably safe to say that anything coming from these countries labeled “organic” is a scam meant to appeal to niche buyers. Without some environmental regulations (which China doesn’t have any), there is nothing stopping crops from being grown in filthy conditions, and you can’t have clean food that isn’t grown in the clean land.
Not only should you be concerned about buying produce or packaged foods from China, but you should be weary about whether or not supplements or superfood has ingredients sourced from China or other countries with poor farming standards and no regulations.
Skip Labels That Call Seafood Organic
Though it’s not impossible to find some fish that legitimately come from sustainable sources, you’ll have to really do your research and they’re probably only sold in certain stores. If you live near the coast, it’s possible to find fish from small boats that do use sustainable methods, but there are no federal regulations that makes something “sustainable” or “organic” when it comes to fish and other ocean life. So, be wary of any seafood with these labels, and keep in mind that they don’t undergo any toxicity testing either.
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As you can see, there’s a lot to consider when it comes to buying organic food, and just because you see an organic label, doesn’t mean there aren’t risks or frauds to keep and eye out for. You can avoid potentially inauthentic or harmful food by checking where it’s sourced, making sure its USDA-certified, and buying locally.