Sunday, January 07, 2007


'No proof' organic food is better
There is no evidence organic food is better than food grown conventionally, minister David Miliband has said.

The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said organic food was more of a "lifestyle choice that people can make".

He insisted that food grown with the use of pesticides and other chemicals should not be regarded as inferior.

In an interview with the Sunday Times he said: "There isn't any conclusive evidence either way."

Organic sales rise

Mr Miliband: "It's only 4% of total farm produce, not 40%, and I would not want to say that 96% of our farm produce is inferior because it's not organic."

He said despite the rise in organic sales being "exciting" for shoppers, they should not think of conventionally-produced food as "second best".

According to the Soil Association, organic food sales in the UK increased by 30% to £1.6bn in 2006.

The association's website says organic food does not contain many of the artificial additives used in modern food production, and also have more natural vitamins and minerals.

It also argues organic food is better for wildlife because it does not use pesticides or dangerous sprays.

Pressure from shoppers has boosted the volume of organic UK produce in supermarkets, the association said last year.


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