America Buys Organic Products
Americans are buying nontoxic food
A new report shows that US shoppers are spending more than $30-B to avoid foods with toxic chemicals.
According to the latest data from the Organic Trade Association (OTA), the organic industry grew nearly 10% in Y 2011.
By definition, organic farming bans the use of synthetic pesticides, energy-intensive components in conventional farming that have been linked to the rise in certain cancers, autism, ADHD, infertility, and other health problems.
Chemical fertilizers, which are blamed for creating massive Dead Zones that damage the fishing industry, are banned in organic agriculture as well.
Organic food is also grown without the use of genetically engineered seeds.
“Consumers are increasingly engaged and discerning when they shop, making decisions based on their values and awareness about health and environmental concerns,” says Christine Bushway, executive director of the OTA. “For them, it matters whether foods are genetically engineered or produced using practices that are good for their families.”
Although price is sometimes an issue, the availability of private-label products, along with the many retail stores for organic goods, gives shoppers seeking organic food more choice.
The organic food industry grew nearly 5% last year, an increase of $2.5-B compared to Y 2010 sales.
Organic fruits and veggies accounted for 50% of those sales, and 40 percent of the total organic market, while the fast-growing meat and poultry sectors experienced a 13% rise in sales compared to Y 2010.
Today, 6% of all dairy sold in the United States is organic according to the data.
Overall, organic foods now represent 4.2% of all food sales in America, and 78% of all US families are buying some organic products.
With organic farms in all 50 states, 4.6-M acres of farmland and neighboring water supplies are being protected from toxic chemicals.
The organic industry isn’t just good for our bodies, either. OTA data shows it’s an important part of the US economy, too.
The organic industry is creating jobs at 4 times the national average, and 94% of organic operations in the US are planning to either maintain staff or increase employment in Y 2012.
Looking at the 17,600 certified organic farms in the country, researchers found that they are 35% more profitable than the average farm.
John Gelwicks, founder, eGen Industries
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