7 Foods Experts Won’t Eat

Wake Up World

Food experts reveal 7 foods they won’t eat from a grocery store.

1. GMO FOODS (any of them!)

The Expert: Jeffrey Smith, author of Seeds of Deception and founder of Institute for Responsible Technology

The Situation: GMO foods encourage the massive spraying of herbicides on our topsoils, polluting the ground, waterways, animals and humans. Scientific studies have shown the RoundUp Ready genes in GMO foods to transfer to our intestinal flora and the pesticide producing genes, called Bt-toxins, to be present in both unborn fetuses and their mothers.

In short, GMO foods pollute our environment and out bodies. No long term health studies of GMO foods have been performed on humans. In addition to polluting our bodies with mutant DNA, eating RoundUp Ready GM foods insures a hefty dose of toxic herbicide, given that GM crops are even more heavily sprayed than conventional non-organic crops. The widespread use of Round Up and other pesticides has been identified as the source of Bee Colony collapse. The environmental, political, economic, and social damage by GM foods is staggering. GM foods include corn, soybeans, sugarbeets, potatoes, alfalfa, canola, potato, papaya, rice, honey, squash, rapeseed, tomatoes, sweet corn, tobacco, peas, and more in the pipeline.

The Solution: Check that all the food you purchase is non-GMO. Demand a halt to GMO foods any chance you get. Support mandatory labeling of GMO foods. Buy ORGANIC. Plant a garden. For further information on Monsanto (the leading company of GMO seeds), please click here.

2. Canned Tomatoes

The Expert: Fredrick vom Saal, PhD, an endocrinologist at the University of Missouri who studies bisphenol-A.

The Situation: The resin linings of tin cans contain bisphenol-A, a synthetic estrogen that has been linked to ailments ranging from reproductive problems to heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Unfortunately, acidity (a prominent characteristic of tomatoes) causes BPA to leach into your food. Studies show that the BPA in most people’s body exceeds the amount that suppresses sperm production or causes chromosomal damage to the eggs of animals. “You can get 50 mcg of BPA per liter out of a tomato can, and that’s a level that is going to impact people, particularly the young,” says vom Saal. “I won’t go near canned tomatoes.”

The Solution: Choose tomatoes in glass bottles (which do not need resin linings), such as the brands Bionaturae and Coluccio. You can also get several types in Tetra Pak boxes, like Trader Joe’s and Pomi.

3. Corn-Fed Beef

The Expert: Joel Salatin, co-owner of Polyface Farms and author of half a dozen books on sustainable farming.

The Situation: Cattle evolved to eat grass, not grains. But farmers today feed their animals corn and soybeans, which fatten up the animals faster for slaughter. More money for cattle farmers (and lower prices at the grocery store) means a lot less nutrition for us. A recent comprehensive study conducted by the USDA and researchers from Clemson University found that compared with corn-fed beef, grass-fed beef is higher in beta-carotene, vitamin E, omega-3s, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), calcium, magnesium, and potassium; lower in inflammatory omega-6s; and lower in saturated fats that have been linked to heart disease. “We need to respect the fact that cows are herbivores, and that does not mean feeding them corn and chicken manure,” says Salatin.

The Solution: Buy grass-fed beef, which can be found at specialty grocers, farmers’ markets, and nationally at Whole Foods. It’s usually labeled because it demands a premium, but if you don’t see it, ask your butcher.

4. Microwave Popcorn

The Expert: Olga Naidenko, PhD, a senior scientist for the Environmental Working Group.

The Situation: Chemicals, including perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), in the lining of the bag, are part of a class of compounds that may be linked to infertility in humans, according to a recent study from UCLA. In animal testing, the chemicals cause liver, testicular, and pancreatic cancer. Studies show that microwaving causes the chemicals to vaporize—and migrate into your popcorn. “They stay in your body for years and accumulate there,” says Naidenko, which is why researchers worry that levels in humans could approach the amounts causing cancers in laboratory animals. DuPont and other manufacturers have promised to phase out PFOA by 2015 under a voluntary EPA plan, but millions of bags of popcorn will be sold between now and then.

The Solution: Pop natural kernels the old-fashioned way: in a skillet. For flavorings, you can add real butter or dried seasonings, such as dillweed, vegetable flakes, or soup mix.

5. Farmed Salmon

The Expert: David Carpenter, MD, director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University at Albany and publisher of a major study in the journal Science on contamination in fish.

The Situation: Nature didn’t intend for salmon to be crammed into pens and fed soy, poultry litter, and hydrolyzed chicken feathers. As a result, farmed salmon is lower in vitamin D and higher in contaminants, including carcinogens, PCBs, brominated flame retardants, and pesticides such as dioxin and DDT. According to Carpenter, the most contaminated fish come from Northern Europe, which can be found on American menus. “You can only safely eat one of these salmon dinners every 5 months without increasing your risk of cancer,” says Carpenter, whose 2004 fish contamination study got broad media attention. “It’s that bad.” Preliminary science has also linked DDT to diabetes and obesity, but some nutritionists believe the benefits of omega-3s outweigh the risks. There is also concern about the high level of antibiotics and pesticides used to treat these fish. When you eat farmed salmon, you get dosed with the same drugs and chemicals.

The Solution: Switch to wild-caught Alaska salmon. If the package says fresh Atlantic, it’s farmed. There are no commercial fisheries left for wild Atlantic salmon.

6. Milk Produced with Artificial Hormones

The Expert: Rick North, project director of the Campaign for Safe Food at the Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility and former CEO of the Oregon division of the American Cancer Society.

The Situation: Milk producers treat their dairy cattle with recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or rBST, as it is also known) to boost milk production. But rBGH also increases udder infections and even pus in the milk. It also leads to higher levels of a hormone called insulin-like growth factor in milk. In people, high levels of IGF-1 may contribute to breast, prostate, and colon cancers. “When the government approved rBGH, it was thought that IGF-1 from milk would be broken down in the human digestive tract,” says North. As it turns out, the casein in milk protects most of it, according to several independent studies. “There’s not 100% proof that this is increasing cancer in humans,” admits North. “However, it’s banned in most industrialized countries.”

The Solution: Check labels for rBGH-free, rBST-free, produced without artificial hormones, or organic milk. These phrases indicate rBGH-free products.

7. Conventional Apples

The Expert: Mark Kastel, former executive for agribusiness and co-director of the Cornucopia Institute, a farm-policy research group that supports organic foods

The Situation: If fall fruits held a “most doused in pesticides contest,” apples would win. Why? They are individually grafted (descended from a single tree) so that each variety maintains its distinctive flavor. As such, apples don’t develop resistance to pests and are sprayed frequently. The industry maintains that these residues are not harmful. But Kastel counters that it’s just common sense to minimize exposure by avoiding the most doused produce, like apples. “Farm workers have higher rates of many cancers,” he says. And increasing numbers of studies are starting to link a higher body burden of pesticides (from all sources) with Parkinson’s disease.

The Solution: Buy organic apples. If you can’t afford organic, be sure to wash and peel them first.

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  • Ken

    apples: the vast majority of nutrients of an apple are found in the skin. if you have a “conventional” apple and peel it to avoid the pesticides you are also avoiding the nutrients. so organic is really the only way to go if you can possibly afford it.

    • Sue manous

      If companies really cared about the consumers, the good healthy product would be cheaper.

      • rayzee

        Really the most uninformed comment I’ve ever read. Simply wishful thinking. If a farmer goes to the trouble of producing a healthy apple that will sit in cold storage for weeks and months and not rot without resorting to the easy solution of pesticide sprays do you really think that he/she should charge LESS for that precious apple. Have you heard of mass production? Supply and demand? Are you willing to pay more taxes to subsidize organic farmers? Think!

        • Andrew

          Wishful thinking for sure but we do subsidize food in this country. Mostly corn and soy, two junk crops. What if we did subsidize organic instead? I know that would never happen but what if.

          • My Two Cents

            Watch the movie Food Inc and FLOW: For Love of Water… Two eye opening documentaries…

          • Brian

            I am a beyond organic farmer and I do not want govt subsidies. The gov is the reason for upside down food products and prices in the USA. Only in the USA is food so cheap (less than 10% of our income is food) Organic would be a closer to the true food price of food and if we would pay a little more for our foods and less for our cars and phones and whatever there would be more farmers growing good food.

          • Jason

            Well spoken. We will come to find the true price of food in the upcoming year/years.

          • Brian

            It is true that soy and corn is heavily subsidized to feed cattle for the meat industry. It would be nice if the government stopped giving in to lobbyists and big business and started caring more about the citizens. Subsidizing organic farming would be great! It would also be great if GENETICALLY MODIFIED FOODS were banned from America. Unfortunately the government seems to care more about the interests of big business than our health. Hopefully one day the government will put the citizens first.

          • Dustin

            Vote for Ron Paul and our crappy government can finally change in the favor of the PEOPLE. Once he jumps into office and ends the possibility of WW3 he will be able to focus on all these other problems we have. Believe you me he wants us to have Peace and Prosperity.

          • Ron Paul is the man for sure…His message is Freedom. “No government can stop an idea whose time has come” Victor Hugo.

          • MButler

            Members of the government are also members of these big corporations. So of course they are going to support their own businesses. Watch Food Inc. to find out that owners of Monsanto are also members of parliament. Monsanto is the biggest corporation for producing GMO crops.

          • dw

            I fully support organic foods for those who can afford it, but banning GMO’s is simply not feasible. Let’s imagine that every acre produced organic crops. First, there would not be enough people willing to perform the labor-intensive job of manually caring for these crops. Second, we would not be able to produce nearly enough food to feed the world. Organic farms simply cannot produce as much food per acre. GMO’s are designed to maximize yield per acre. These crops are exported to developing countries. If you were to ban GMO foods from production, MANY more would starve. So as i said, by all means purchase organic foods if you can afford them and they are available to you. Do not, however, villianize farmers growning GMO crops. Without them, many, many more people would starve.

          • TruthInFarming

            This post is simply a lie, flat-out. Genetic Engineering may have begun with good intentions, but they have not panned-out. In practice, genetically engineered foods have turned out to harmful beyond the scope of this post.

            Three response points to this post:

            If GMO crop were truly necessary “to feed the world”, we would not be alive today because for thousands of years people lived without them.

            Organic farms can produce MORE food per acre because of biodiversity and healthier soil than “conventional.”

            To cite one developing country that thought GMO crops would help, research India. GMO’s in India were detrimental and lead people to complete destitution due to in-debtedness over the price of seed combined with crop failure. And that was only part of the problem.

          • bob

            U R stupid…..period!!!!!!! @dw

          • Tony G

            Or Fathead

          • Barbara

            Most large Agri-Business plus mega beef and pork farms are subsidized, in the US. Organic farmers and those who farm sustainably are not helped by the Government, hence the higher prices, above what it costs to farm in a humane manner.
            If you want longer shelf life… you’ll most likely get a shorter health life. If you want that trade off just buy regular “food”.
            I remember when there were times that certain seasonal foods were not available… now that they are, we all pay the price in more ways than one.

        • ECON101

          “The most UNINFORMED comment you’ve ever read”? Don’t be so dramatic. If the cost of an organic apple is X, the cost of pesticides and preservatives is Y, it would stand to reason that the organic apple would be less expensive to produce. Put it this way, Organic = $x.xx. Conventional = $x.xx + $y.yy.

          • Justin

            Thats not how economics works. You have to consider it’s easier to produce the conventional apples, so you have more of them. So you can sell them for less. That’s closer to the truth.

          • TessB

            No, it’s not that simple. You also have to figure in how long that apple is going to stay “fresh” and available for sale in the stores.

            The chemicals prolong the fruit’s shelf life, thereby reducing the number of apples that must be produced, and reducing the farmer’s overall costs which more than cover the price of the pesticides.

          • Meg

            Well, remember, people forget other associated costs. If you chose to eat conventional and not organic, you will probably be paying with you health and your life. Longer shelf life should not be a standard for any reason. We eat food to sustain ourselves not just as some convenient thing to grab and eat off our shelf at home – that has been sitting there for a long time.

          • Lynne

            True—but the same chemicals that increase shelf life and lower food production costs are playing havoc with our body chemistry, causing and exacerbating obesity and all manner of illness. The less chemicals in our bodies the better—whether in our food or our medication.

          • UA

            this doesn’t take into consideration the increased cost of food storage for an organic apple (cold storage costs much more than simply leaving it on a grocery shelf) which we’ll call W, the loss of crops due to pests, weather, weeds, and other outside effects that pesticides prevent which we’ll call Z. The equation ends up looking more like Conventional Apple = $x.xx +$y.yy Organic Apple = $x.xx + $w.ww + $z.zz

            Organic apples cost more to grow, thus they cost more to buy. Until the buyers are willing to pay more and create a much higher demand, conventional apples will reign. My advice; Buck up and spend the extra money.

          • I understand the nutritional value of different foods and recommend to choose organic or locally grown (without harmful chemicals) whenever possible–especially in the case of things like apples and peppers which are heavily sprayed. However, I would disagree that the price will come down with increased demand. I have watched interest and demand for organic foods increase dramatically over the last 10 years–right along with the price of those foods. It is frustrating to recommend the purchase of these foods, only to see the price continue to go up–not down.

          • Therese

            In Norway some supermarket chains have a competition at the moment , so eco. apples , bananas and some veggies are cheaper then the conventional grown !!! Good for us .

          • Tim

            It’s simply, well, not that simple. If not adding pesticides produced the same amount of apples that would work out just peachy. However, WITHOUT those chemicals you have to produce MORE apples to yield the same crop output.

            Crop damaging insects and other issues like preservation of that organic crop were not in your equation. These become much more prevalent without those chemicals. If I have to plant 100 organic apples to get the same chemically treated 10 in the store your math simple doesn’t work.

          • Audry Smith

            That isn’t sound logic. Just because organic farmers don’t use pesticides doesn’t mean they save money. Pesticides are used because they INCREASE production for LESS money. Pesticides are used to protect the crops from damage and allow for a higher yield of product. Organic farmers have to use different methods to do the same thing only their products have much shorter shelf lives…. that makes their products much more costly. That would be why most farmers stopped using these “organic” growing techniques in the past.

          • Julie

            An organic farmer will typically have a smaller field (smaller crop/yield) vs. a conventional farmer.

            An organic farmer must have organic compost and soil to grow their crops vs. a conventional farmer that can use sewer sludge and all kinds of cheap & nasty pesticides.

            An organic farmer has to become certified organic and keep up that certification vs. a conventional farmer does not have that expense + may get $$$ from the government.

            An organic farmer has to weed their field vs. a conventional farmer spraying the weeds and bugs.

            An organic farmer rotates the crop for the most nutrients vs. a conventional farmer typically just plants in the same field over and over.

            So you can see that it is not just X vs. X+Y. Organic farming costs a bit more in some instances, but is worth it for the planet and our bodies.

          • Donna

            Ya,ya,ya, Organic (sample) apples is all the same color, size, shape & weight, just like from picture, I will say cloned . Farmers apple is just different one of each other , witch men grown natural, “healthy pesticide produce is something that growers control “. manufacturer of pesticides, warning farmers wot should do in order to protect consumer and them self .Why farmers will poisoning people? Today , people mixing very ease wot is good wot is bed, don’t let nobody to wash your brain with word :”organic”. I do think this way .

          • deweb


          • eve

            Donna, you crack me up. Tell me more.

          • Lorraine

            What the ??????

          • Meredith

            Except that, sadly, pest suppression without pesticides is generally more expensive and less effective than with them in mass production, and I’d bet non-synthetic fertilizers are pricier than synthetic too. So you really end up with something more like Organic-(# of lost crops)=$x.xx + $z.zz + $n.nn, Conventional=$x.xx + $y.yy + $s.ss, where z>y & n>s. Although obviously that is still an oversimplification, and there are plenty of other costs, like getting certified organic, or producing on a smaller scale, or not having the bargaining power of a massive corporation behind you.

          • farmfriend

            Unfortunately, this equation is missing the yield and labor variables. Organic raised produce requires more labor for the equivalent yield of chemically treated conventional produce.

          • conciousness

            It is cheaper to produce organic apples…but they spend extra money putting chemicals in the food…so we can get sick and spend big money on their drugs..it’s a wicked cycle…….

          • Brian

            Have you ever grown any?

          • abbottjebes

            Except for the increased amount of land necessary, amount of waste due to disease, pests, etc… Organic production has it’s own costs too. Consider also that most organic producers pay more in wages than their “conventional” counterparts.
            Organic tends to mean a decreased production compared to a non-organic farm. Greater production (supply) = lower costs.

          • John

            Uninformed? Organic food is more expensive because the government subsidizes the farms which use the pesticides and preservatives. Why? The owners of the companies that make these chemicals are in ofice on Capitol Hill. I’m not trying to argue, I’m trying to inform. Check out the documentary “Food Inc” or watch portions of it on YouTube.

        • david

          Yes, I am willing to pay taxes to encourage organic farming so that the food we eat is safe. Thank you.

        • Hanachash

          She IS thinking! You’re just thinking IN the box, and based of of what people TELL you economics should be driven off of. WE create the economics. WE create the systems. if WE say organic should be cheaper, it CAN be – it’s ALL based on numbers, equations, and projections of not only supply and demand, but heart.

          I think it’s time for you to get out of your stinking thinking and connect that heart of your to your head that has lost its creative thinking. As Einstein used to say, imagination is MUCH more powerful than knowledge!

          And be nice!

          • If the “conventional” farmer had to internalize the health and environmental costs of all that spraying, *then* organic fruit would be cheaper.

            Our economic system is perverse. Occupy Perverse Economics!

          • Gavin

            Ok then, let’s just think outside the box and all plant an apple tree in our garden. Ultimately, decentralizing the farming industry is the best solution.

        • Kris

          I worked at an actual organic farm, we had our organic apples shipped in since we didn’t have land to produce everything that we supplied to the public at our farm stand. This farm is in busy, populated South Orange County, CA. Anyway, our apples were only 1.99 per pound 4 yrs ago. All of our prices were competitive with just even normal supermarkets. The truth is this: If people want to pay farmers to poison themselves, their employees (especially their employees) all of the consumers eating the food, and the soil, and the air…you get the message, they will do it. There has to be more of a motivation to switch to organic. The cancers, the birth defects, those have been proven, nothing about pesticides and fungicides is a surprise. People want cheap food. I’ll tell you what, I will NOT pay someone to poison me. You want to save a dollar today, go ahead, eat your poison and get seriously ill later in life, and probably not too much later. You have no idea what a can of worms all of these toxins are. There is no such thing as a healthy toxic apple. All of this money we are “saving” now…what a joke, Ever heard of cancer? Ever bothered to notice how many people have it now? Do you have any idea how much it costs to get sick? It’s a business. Economics. You can choose for yourself or you can go right off the cliff with the other lemmings. Organic produce does not sit in cold storage for long periods of time either, organic farmers choose to be ethically responsible, they’re not just trying to make a buck, it’s a responsibility to humanity to produce a safe, nutritious product.

          • Jeff

            “People want cheap food. I’ll tell you what, I will NOT pay someone to poison me. You want to save a dollar today, go ahead, eat your poison and get seriously ill later in life…”
            It would be wonderful if all farmers were growing organic fruits and vegetables but to condemn someone who buys non-organic smacks of elitism. There are 35 million people in the US living in poverty and need to stretch their money so that they may eat. Those consumers may very well pass on organic items because to them it is a luxury that cannot be afforded.
            Unless organic farming is mandated is this country the purchase of such will be divided along class lines.

          • paul Iantosca

            Well said, it is so sad that young folks today are willing to accept the big corporate bull and they do not think of all the long term health problems that will result.
            Medicine and curing problems, after we are affected by all the chemicals, has become a billion dollar business. Let’s prevent sickness and eat healthy.
            No chemicals for me thank you!

          • Lorraine

            Excellent response! #29 Kris. Thank you for sharing these important facts on organic. The Organic farmer is supporting a safe environment. Our planet and our bodies deserve it.

        • alex

          commodity agriculture is already subsidized by tax dollars, thus their ability to throw away corn and chemicals. Think!

        • HKT

          Your comment rates as the most ignorant I’ve ever read. PESTICIDES kill insects on the crop…they do nothing to preserve produce in storage.
          It is absolute ignorance that anyone should support the government subsidizing foods grown and treated with hazardous substances and Genetically modified crops that have been PROVEN to cause cancer- but not support subsidization of foods grown organically. You don’t care if there’s poison on your apple, as long as it’s cheap? That “cheap” apple ends up costing tens of thousands of dollars in medical costs when it makes you sick. YOU need to think. No need to pay more in taxes. Stop subsidies to farmers that use chemical pesticides, fertilizers and herbicides. Stop subsidies to farmers that grow GMO crops. Subsidize healthy food for a healthy nation. Bring back the “victory” garden. THAT is national security. It’s not wishful thinking to demand healthy, POISON FREE food!

      • Valerie

        Another way of looking at this is that if customers care about their health, they should work on finding ways to allocate a greater proportion of their budget to food. We have to make producing organic veggies and meat viable for farmers. We spend less of our overall income on food today than people did in the past, and if we insist on getting it cheap, we pay with our health.

        • Dawn

          That’s all well and good but as Jeff (#35) said, a lot of people in this country are already living at or below the poverty line and while some of them might be able to get by with fewer pairs of jeans in trade for an organic apple or two… for the most part, they can’t afford what they’re buying now, which is the cheapest, emptiest calories available. For those people, organic (which often retails at twice or three times the price of the conventional brand-name foods, and several times more than the bottom-shelf generics) is not an option even if they rearrange spending.

          I’m a huge advocate for changing food habits, but we have to understand that it’s not simply poor personal choices that cause avoidance of healthier foods – it’s situations like a lack of grocery stores with healthy options in inner cities, it’s single-parent families who grew up thinking that cooking meant boiling EZ Mac because “real cooking” took too long, and it’s trouble understanding how buying produce that’s three times the price of your boxed meal can actually save you money, because budgeting and financial skills are hard to learn if you never have money to learn with.

          We aren’t the ones paying with our health – the poor are paying far worse, and we’re the ones over here preaching to the choir about good food choices instead of getting out there and physically helping the people who are worse off than us get to a better and healthier place.

          Go plant a community garden instead of patronizing readers here! (I’m growing my own veggies already and have plans to expand the garden to a nearby city-owned lot if I can… we live in an area where the nearest grocery store is over three miles away, over a few hills and with no sidewalks – we’re lucky to have a community farmer’s market run by a local nonprofit during the summer, but in winter you can’t get good healthy food nearby!)

      • YoBimbo

        Rather than blast your comment for being uninformed, let me say that I understand your sentiment. I used to work in health insurance, and people would complain to me when we denied their claims for routine physicals. “You’d think you would want me to have physicals to take care of myself! You should pay this claim!” I would calmly tell them that of course we wanted them to be healthy, and we did have plans that covered preventative care – unfortunately, the customer wasn’t enrolled in one of those plans.

        My point here is that the market provides what we demand, and we get what we pay for. We have to start changing our demands in order to change the market. Eat less, eat local, eat fresh, eat seasonally. Devote more of our budget to eating healthy food, and less of it to a gas-guzzling car or to the iPhone or to any other indulgence we can reduce.

        It’s all about the choices WE make, and if we change our choices, the market will have to respond. If we continue to demand all foods NOW and FAST and CHEAP, nothing will change.

        • Bill Nolan

          Excellent comments, YoBimbo. I would just add that for people to feel compelled to make such choices they need to be informed. For instance, if the chemicals contained in produce and packaged foods were on labels, I doubt if many people would buy the poisoned foods.

        • I know parents who say they can’t afford to buy organic fruit for their kids while their cart has two bags of chips and a bag or two of Doritos in it! It’s all about priorities.

        • Sarah

          All great points. And I would agree that demand dictates supply, HOWEVER: the elasticity of demand is skewed by subsidies bringing prices way down for the bad stuff. So, we need to change demand of the people, but we also need to change demand based on the price of good food.

      • or perhaps food would cost more as a percentage of domestic product, or perhaps there would be food shortages.

      • Most companies, especially big agribusiness, don’t care about consumers, they only care about profits. The best way for us to eliminate the use of pesticides is to eliminate mass production of food. We need to be more concerned with buying seasonal locally grown produce direct from a neighborhood farm. I know this is not possible overnight but their are many Western countries who do this and we should follow suit. There are far too many diseases caused by mass production of foods. Not to mention colony collapse disorder (CCD) killing off bees so much so that they disappear from a region entirely. We are at a crossroads and need to start making a change now. These companies have decided disease is better for them so their families can play golf and spend time on their yacht will go on killing for profits. Meanwhile others suffer uninsured paying millions for hospital bills but buy into the illusion they are saving money on mass produced cheap food.

      • jenny

        Why would you possible think that companies care about consumers? If consumers actually cared about their health there would be more of a market for healthy foods.

      • dal

        wow ignorance, greed is power, so we are mearly tools to them getting richer, nothing else.and thats how the monatary system functions and it will always

      • Spencer Leava

        “If companies really cared about the consumers, the good healthy product would be cheaper.”

        It hard to put that kind of stupid into perspective.

        For one, you seem to have a complete ignorance on what production costs are. If an unhealthy item takes 50 cents to produce a serving, and a healthy choice takes 1.50 dollars to produce a serving, then the main reason that the unhealthy choice is cheaper due to production costs. Companies do not make conspiracies to poison your digestive track just for the fun of it, its because people demand food at an unreasonably low price.

        Second, there are TONS of super cheap healthy alternatives. I switched from getting most my protein from meats to beans, and I am saving a shitload of money doing it. I can get a months worth of beans at the price of 5 days of ground beef.

      • Lorraine

        So true….The companies HAVE a choice, make more product and quicker or consider the quality. They are approached by the lobbyists for the chemical companies to use the product. On the other side of the coin, government won’t subsidize the farmer if he doesn’t use the chemicals.

      • flanamac

        even if companies cared, the cost of organic is much higher to produce, and the yield is generally smaller. We have to get used to using more of our income to feed ourselves. If we cared enough about ourselves, we would spend a larger percentage of our income on food and maybe not get that new blouse that we don’t really need.

      • Maureen

        Companies DON”T care about consumers, they care only about their bottom line…..$$$$$$$$>

    • Cory

      I buy organic when possible. I shop around to find where the best organic deals show up repeatedly. I find that some stores have frequent sales on organic apples that make them less expensive than the conventional ones so I stock up. Apples can last for weeks in the refrigerator. I do this with other organic produce as well. Shop around. I also find organic nuts…some less expensive than conventional…and make my own nut milks (love cashew milk) and don’t bother with cow’s milk. If you have never made nut milks just find a youtube video that shows step by step how to make it. Lots of alternatives to make less expensive but healthier choices.

    • Kris

      It would be nice to think that peeling a skin off of a fruit magically fixed the poison issue. It doesn’t. Apples should never be eaten unless they are organic. I worked for an organic farm. Any thin skinned fruits, especially berries ( they are sprayed with fungicides, which are the WORST type of poisons ) should NEVER be eaten conventionally. As bad as all that already is, it’s also not okay to spray poison into the air, onto the soil too. The air carries it far, the sprayers breathe it in, and Ive read all sorts of documented cases where the sprayers children has major birth defects, no lie. Not to mention cancers acquired by the actual sprayers themselves. It’s not good enough to think peeling a piece of fruit is the solution. It’s in the soil! It’s in the air!! And it remains in the food. The food is grown in the soil with poison in it, then it’s sprayed on top of that…poison need to not be used at all, because it’s getting into the environment, then you are also eating it. Ever wonder why it seems like everyone these days has cancer? I have cancer, and Ive eaten healthy my whole life, but what does that mean anymore? It’s an epidemic and the more we pretend its not there the worse it’s going to get. Wake up people.

      • Janet Cruz

        Sorry about your cancer, but we have a cancer, heart disease, diabetes epidemic in this country, due to our bad diet. It’s not just pesticides, it’s also the amount of animal proteins (meat and dairy) we eat. For an eye opening expose of this, and the research that backs it up, read “The China Study”. You can get healthy again.

      • Bertha Hope

        Who to believe when researching for a better way to eat? We are being held hostage by greedy corporations who will sell us anything with a lie.Sorry about your illness,i think the major illnesses that afflict the American people all stem from how the environment is treated,and how we have been brainwashed into believing in fast food.Organic food is a mystery because anything grown in soil that was previously treated with chemicals has to grow through several generations before its organic.and that brings another set of issues for the farming industry to deal with .

    • john

      First I am an apple farmer. And I have the following observations. 1) Every farmer in the world would be organic if they could make money at it. Farmers are not stupid. 2) nature despises the human race. She owes us nothing as we have altered(destroyed) her professed balance since the beginning of time. 3) Insects can not read. The word organic means nothing to control them. Pest control must be used. Rotation, screening, selective beneficial’s , organic chemicals, intense human labor. Something must be done to disrupt the natural order of what eats what. 4) If I were to be organic my chemical bill would be 4-5 times higher. 5) If I were to be organic my carbon footprint would be 6-7 times higher because I would have to apply organic chemicals that much more often. 6) If I were to be organic I project over 55 % of my crop would be unsellable due to insect, and fungal damage. Most organic crops are sprayed with organic chemicals. Some of these chemicals I will not allow on my farm. Lime sulfurs are extremely toxic and marginally effect. copper sulfides poison the soil and in many instances need to be applied at rates damaging to soil health. Pyrethroid Insecticides kill every insect in the field. Disrupting years of work balancing benifical insects in my orchard. I believe it is about balance not organic or not. I believe you need to know where and how your food is grown. I believe you need to know your grower. As in all things balance is the key. JOHN

      • Sarah

        This is tremendous information. You should really share this with other people, because I certainly didn’t know any of that.

      • Mike

        Thank you John.
        I am so happy that a true farmer can share the news about the troubles of organic farming. Thank you for the information based on facts. I wish people could see the waste due to imperfections on fruits and veggetables that come organically farmed. It would also be nice for people to see the number of times some organic crops are coated with chemicals. I have friends completely avoiding any conventional produce because their doctor told them it is produced without chemicals. That information is completely incorrect, and a Dr. should get his facts straight before giving advice to patients. In my opinion, everyone should spend a few years with their own garden growing the produce necessary to survive. If everyone could get their hands dirty in this way, more people would understand the basics of agriculture and food preservation.
        Lastly, My favorite organic pet peeve is placing organic food into plastic bags/boxes for distribution and sale. If you truly believe in the concept of organics, no part of your food should ever touch any packaging like plastic.

      • Thanks John, this is great information. I was most surprised that apples made this list. But it is a business and the market adjusts with supply and demand. It is obvious that people want organic or natural products from all the comments, but hopefully people understand that it just costs more (in a lot of cases) to grow things this way.

      • Thank you John,
        I had no idea that organic chemicals were used never heard about Lime sulfurs, I use copper sulfides on my orchids here in Brasil but I still get funguses that kill the plant anyway, and I don’t eat the flowers.
        I don’t know what Pyrethoid is but now I’ll find out.
        Your information was very important.

    • Beto

      What about washing them with vinegar/baking soda as advertised here?

      Does it really work that well? Any idea?


    • Aatalla

      Apples: All the fruits we eat are from grafted trees, and that doesnt disclude organic apples.
      second thing, organic does allow usage of pesticides, even some dangerous mercury-based ones.

    • Eve

      …thank goodness I’m vegan…I was a vegetarian for 7 years, then strict vegetarian next 2 years, now almost vegan WHY you ask??? well, its obvious – there’s a WAR going on, there is a WAR going on, OUR ANIMALS are at WAR…not once did my Veterinary College educate nor enlighten me or my other colleagues about the shocking brutal unethical cruel world ‘factory farmed animals’ are bred and forced to live out their suffering lives NOT ONCE did they teach us of the horror stories of our animal friends were right at that very moment being used and abused in ways no body could imagine, that’s why we were all there BECAUSE WE LOVE ANIMALS because we WANT TO PROTECT AND SAVE THEM, HELP and NURTURE them…BUT now WE ARE ALL AWARE so I made MY CHOICE EITHER THEM OR ME…AND WITHOUT HESITATION I CHOSE ME…But here’s the irony I DON’T MISS OUT ON MY HEALTH NOR MY HAPPINESS…in fact, my anger, guilt, panic attacks, irritability, colic, lack of concentration, insomnia, high cholesterol…it’s all gone YIPEE!!! Not only am I all that FREE I am so HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY standing my ground, standing firm and strong REFUSING to be a part of FACTORY FARMING. ANIMALS ARE MY FRIENDS…they are sentient beings just like us who communicate exactly like we do…in fact the’re much smarter than we are they use their minds, they are and always will be connected spiritually much deeper than us, that makes them honorable. Oh yeah, I turned my GP’s brainwashing medicine idealisations upside down I proved to him with my blood test results my health changed dramatically and another fact: my vitamin B levels are much higher, no more anemia, lupus gone, calcium levels higher etc etc etc….my zincs still a little low but i think its to do with a copper overload, thus, working on that. I cant digest nuts or seeds, mmm you say, but i found a way around that…I eat the butters from these and wow wee I’m so happy! So my point here is guys: this guy is great and I am grateful for an elderly gentleman health professional to have seen the TRUTH and have the guts to speak out. If you despise WAR and you despise the HOLOCAUSTS we’ve had then you also despise FACTORY FARMING. One person DOES make a difference and it may as well be YOU, make that CHANGE either SWITCH TO guilt and anger FREE VEGAN LIFESTYLE or HUMANE RAISED HOBBY FARMED MEAT – always buy humane raised meat for your pets (no hard-to-digest beef no parasitic-pork & roo) – vegan diets for pets is cruel and unfair…pets digestive system entire network of body function depends on fresh meat it is not our decision to ‘make’ them vegan BUT its our decision to CHOSE HUMANE MEATS for them. Happy Health to You, Eve x

  • British, Irish and French beef cattle are predominantly grass-fed. In fact, corn-fed is so uncommon over here that the beef comes specifically labelled as such and costs more (because it’s been imported, normally from the USA or Argentina).

    I have to ask, though – why does the USA allow milk producers to feed growth hormones to cows when almost every other industrial nation banned it 10-20 years ago?

    • Andrea

      @ Management Prawn, I ask the same thing. After much research regarding GMO’s and growth hormones our Government (who claims to care about our health while shooting us “the bird” behind their backs) I have lost trust in the government. As a health conscious mother and consumer, the amount of money we must spend to consume meat, dairy, and eggs without hormones is shameful. I often scream in my head that it is a crime our government allows the crap to house on the shelves of our grocery stores. It is time for Americans to wake up!

    • Cactus Girl

      Simple answer to your question: $$$$$

    • Cactus Girl

      $$$$$ Answer to why USA continues to sell food laced with pesticides, grown with hormones, petrochemical fertilizers, etc.

      • Yes, $$$ to agribusiness owners/shareholders. $$$ from taxpayers supporting agribusiness with farm subsidies originally designed to help small farmers, now supporting large corporations.

        • Rose Sandberg

          The FDA is made up of people who control and have huge stakes (pun..) in the industry. Watch the informing movie Food, Inc.
          Also, many farmers who sell to large processing plants are also in debt to them, it reminds me of the feudal system…

          • Bill Nolan

            In our current political climate, the FDA and USDA view their missions as promoting business as opposed to protecting consumers. They are clients of big business.

          • Mike

            I am not sure that Food Inc gives the whole picture of the agricultural industry. I do not know a farmer (and I know a lot of them) that wouldn’t want to pass on his/her legacy on to their children if the children would want that life. We have an understanding of the land, and that we need to maintain it to continue our lifestyle and to leave a legacy for our children. While I agree there are some out there who care nothing for the environment or what production of food does to it, I would like to think that a majority of us chose to do what is right for our land, family, and end product while still making a profit for us to live on.

        • Bill Nolan

          You point out a huge problem, Laura. There are people working very hard to get congress to produce a good farm bill that gives the financial advantage to small farmers rather than to agribusiness giants. It’s a difficult job because agribusiness giants have lots of money (some of it tax dollars given to them by our government) to flood Washington DC with lobbyists and campaign funds.

    • Diane

      Why? Because it’s all about profit over people here. Take a look at our “health care” system for all the evidence you need.

      • Steve

        Another point about wild caught versus farm raised salmon. Wild caught salmon is high in omega 3’s because the food chain in cold water starts with cold water algae–which is high in Omega 3’s. Krill eat the Algae, small fish eat the krill, big fish eat the smaller fish. In a fish farm where the food chain begins with chicken turds or whateveryou aren’t going to get concetrated Omega 3’s. If “some nutritionists believe the benefits of omega-3s outweigh the risks”–making farm raised salmon worth the risk of the carcinogens which are in it, those nutritionists should chose another line of work because they have no idea what they are talking about. Similarly, when cattle grasses on fresh grass, their meat is high in Omega 3’s. It comes from a natural diet of what the animal is supposed to eat.

      • Sara

        Not only $$$, a HUGE part of all of the issues we’re talking about here go back to lobbyists that are rich and powerful and contribute to political campaigns so that the resulting politicians are indebted to these special interests. We need anti-lobbyists to lobby for the public interest, but the public can’t pay enough for that to compete. Lobbying should be banned, but now more than ever the Supreme Court is protecting “money as speech” so the public’s voice is being drowned out.

    • audiophile

      Big corporate farms… big money in government… out of control lobbyists… take your pick. These are the same reasons the US is the only industrialized nation without universal heathcare!

      • Mitch

        That’s the most ridiculous statement ever posted in the entire known universe. No way would I ever give up the traditional doctor/patient relationship. Universal health care effectively dynamites that concept forever. Why on Earth would any, even mildly educated human that has KNOWN freedom previously EVER voluntarily hand over his health care concerns to the gov’t? Totally uninformed thought process.

        • KSD

          Uninformed? Take a look in the mirror. Not all universal health care systems deny their participants choices outside the program. If one can afford outside care, there are private insurance alternatives in countries like France, Germany, Japan, the UK. Universal health care takes care of the most vulnerable populations and keeps the middle-class from spiraling downward into that same population if they experience a serious illness, and in fact helps to prevent those illnesses altogether by offering people an affordable way to get preventive care. Sadly profit is the main motivator in our country and until the people demand to see their needs met through voting out the crooks who are on corporate payrolls, nothing will change.

          • rayzee

            I have to agree that universal healthcare managed by the government is a bad idea. Look at every other comment about the food situation here in the US and they all roundly condemn our govt as being too responsive to $$$ and lobbyists. Surely you can’t believe they would behave any differently in administering our healthcare. At least I currently know it is about profit and I can choose my caregiver and my health plan. I can vote with my feet. Not so when the govt. steps in – they will not have the best interest of me or you at heart.

        • Bob

          The funny thing about some of the posts on here are saying “you can’t trust the US government with our food” yet they want the government running our healthcare…….think about it people. If they’re doing this to our food, imagine what they’re going to do to our healthcare.

          • BruceM

            I’m American living in Canada and I say thank God for our universal health system here. It’s far better than what you have in the US, and cheaper too.

            What you all are really asking for is more government, not less. You need guidelines to prevent the profiteers from endangering you health. Same with health care. It was the relaxation of government regulation that led to the economic crisis. It’s still a democracy; the government is all of us. So fight for the kind of government you want and deserve, not government beholden to private interests.

        • John


          Just the facts : The US is rated 43 or lower for health care in industrialized nations. And for the privilege of being 43 we pay 2 times more per capita than any other nation. do Americans really deserve this?? It is a fact that if you have access and can pay for deductibles ( mine is $7,000 ) your chance of surviving cancer for 5 years is 50% more than if you can not afford insurance. I say this is murder of Americans by Americans. What ever we are doing now needs to change. There is no way to justify the current system. JOHN

        • Doktor

          Universal Health care denies you the choice of doctor? Ignorant American talking. Go to Germany. Not only are there private options in Germany, you get to choose your doctor there. You get to choose your specialist. Period. Universal health care does NOT equal the UK system. There are many ways to institute a system of care where everyone is insured. Why do all Americans who are opposed to universal care think that this means you somehow can’t choose the doctors you go to? Who is responsible for this stupid myth?

  • alain

    just stop the meat butchery industries it s not natural your eating dead meat or cadavers ,the people look and are sick who eats dead meat

    • GrnSpirit

      So what… we’re supposed to cut off a slice or roast as required & let the rest continue to graze till we’re hungry again? Sounds a bit mean spirited to me. Man is an omnivore. Not a herbavore, not a carnivore, but an OMNIVORE. It’s healthier these days if we raise our own, of course… Heaven only knows what’s in anything we get at the grocery store any longer…

      • Mark Jacobson

        Early humans were herbivores, not omnivores.

        adopting the practice of scavenging meat led to harvesting tools, to hunting, and then to war.

        meat production is killing the environment and has caused widespread disease, as keeping herds spreads disease from animals to humans.

        and cooked meat is the major cause of cancer in our diet.

        what a great innovation!!!

        • Woolfian

          “Early humans were herbivores, not omnivores.
          adopting the practice of scavenging meat led to harvesting tools, to hunting, and then to war.
          meat production is killing the environment and has caused widespread disease, as keeping herds spreads disease from animals to humans.
          and cooked meat is the major cause of cancer in our diet.
          what a great innovation!!!”

          LOL- as an anthropologist, I’m going to ask to see all of your peer-reviewed sources.

          PS- eating meat is the only way we were able to support having a brain of such enormous size in an environment that was increasingly erratic. So to say that we are evolutionarily-programmed for herbivory simply because various Australopith species (many of which were not our ancestors) ate grasses (A. boisie), tubers and other vegetation 3 millions years ago is absolutely illogical. And it’s probably a big part of why Australopiths had chimp-sized brains and 3-4 foot stature for millions and millions years.

    • Bob)

      If you choose not to eat meat that is your choice. But understand the human body evolved as an omnivore, which means we eat everything. In fact the highly evolved brain we have is largely attibuted to the use of fire to cook meat, thus allowing us to eat more protein. You sound like a fanatical Christain, you are spouting crap someone else got you to buy into.

      • @Bob) why does someone who is “spouting” some opinion have to be a “fanatical Christain” (sic) in your worldview? Quit the spin and stay on topic! This was a very informative piece and right on… Leave your bent perspective on Christians for another thread…

    • Jen

      without meat, we would never have evolved to homo sapiens. Animal Meat = protein = big brains and ALL that comes with it. Meat eating is totally natural for hominids, including present day homo sapiens. We are omnivores.

      Anthropologist in NC

      • Abguy

        Animal protein does not result in “big brains” or higher intelligence.

        Some guy in AB

  • linda l

    @management pawn – we have been asking that question while getting no response. Hate what they are doing to food here

  • Orit

    The answer is grow your own veggies. I can manage all the tomatoes and potatoes my husband and I need, even in a small space. When I need “canned tomatoes” for sauce, I boil a few for a minute or two, then plunge in cold water and the skins come right off. Then into the food processor or not, as needed. And there is nothing like digging new potatoes and eating them for supper. Since I spend winters in the U.K., I eat their beef, but not the Canadian product in the summer time. Then I am a “fresh-grown vegetarian.”

    • Richard

      gee…..growing potatoes on my 3′ by 5′ deck? rich!!! you are obviously a very wealthy person and your suggestions mean little to the 99%

      • judah

        Richard, there’s actually no need to be “very wealthy” to have the space/ability to grow potatoes. perhaps you should do a bit of research before being so quick to attack someone you probably know nothing personal about.

        Speaking as someone who is very much NOT wealthy, who manages to grow numerous types of vegetables in limited space it can be one. Yes, your deck size is going to limit your ability to grow stuff, but it CAN be done, trust me.

      • Richard, check out the Square Foot Gardening books by Mel Bartholomew and the Lasagna Gardening books by Patricia Lanza at your library. They offer some practical ideas of how to grow vegetables in a “container garden” on your deck. As a thought: an unused 5 gal. paint bucket (not very expensive at your local home building store) might be a good container. It’s deep and doesn’t take up much room.

        Please don’t let a lack of money discourage you from making strides to better your life (in this case, by growing your own food). Let it make you more creative in how you live! “Wealth” really has nothing to do with money. 🙂

        • CC

          Any suggestions for those of us who have NO outdoor space of any kind?

          • There’s a great article on WuW titled “eating out of the gutter,” a nifty trick used to grow one’s own food by installing gutters on side of the house and growing food in it. Check it out.


            Chers, Jack

          • ChooseHealth

            Many communities dedicate tracts of land for community gardens. They usually cost nothing to participate except you must provide your own seed/plants. The land is owned by the city or an individual land owner in the community; frequently, there is water available on-site…but there may not be a hose. Come prepared with your shovel/hoe, hose/watering container, seeds/plants, and make sure you keep up on routine weeding…out of respect for your “neighboring” gardener. Have fun with this great option…it’s pretty fulfilling to grow and eat your own food!

  • Peter

    Farmed salmon fed on poultry litter?! That creeps me out the most. Who are these bastards that get away with this shit?!

  • henry

    It is aggreable that we as a nation,tring to build and grow fast, have just about polluted ourselves into exstinktion. It is also called greed. Once you get someone buying your product and you need more of it then you have the search for alternitives in production takes hold and then it’s damn the torpedoes full foolerie ahead. The time to really downsize and give the knowledge back of how to grow your own and raise them chickens is at hand. The Green Acres song says it all. good bye city life give me some worms beneath my feet and a shovel to dig with, some seeds to plant and water to grow I will be just fine.

  • You would never think that these foods could cause so many problems. It just goes to show us that we each have to take ownership of what we put on our own tables.

    • Sour Mash

      April, isn’t the problem that we can’t take ownership of it because the firms that profit from this trade in poison muddy the water on the problems their products create. And the regulators are in bed with the producers and are no help. Who has time to seek out the proper info? This is a real problem and I don’t see it getting better soon.

      • Shawna

        We can take ownership of what we put on our table. We can’t all afford organic but we can be aware of what we are and are not feeding ourselves and make the best choices possible. Staying informed is one of the most important parts.

      • Even though I’m inclined to agree to a certain extent, these folks make mad profits only because we are so lazy. They have capitalized on the fact that our society wants stuff NOW with the least amount of effort being put forth. If we don’t demand better, healthier resources why would they go the extra mile at their expense? Having a conscience is one thing, but if we don’t care by refusing their ware, why should they? Supply and demand. . .

  • P

    This world sucks for poor people!

  • gcw

    The word “experts’ in the headline should be a major tip off right there that in a few years these same people will be saying, “Oh, we were wrong about that.” I wonder where they stand on global warming?

    • Mina

      I enjoyed reading your comment. The algore and company will, one day, be footnotes on the story of world huxters. Hysterical nutritionists and health food nuts probably will always be among us. With me, whenever I read “scientists say or conclude or have discovered” a red flag goes up. I studied sciences and wore white lab coats. I retired. Believe me, there is fun to be had just relaxing and enjoying life.

      • This is a shame, to make blanket statements about changing understanding of what stuff does to our bodies. We’re clearly not giving thalidomide to mothers, or putting lead paint on baby cribs any more, for really good reason. Good luck finding any scientists with any credibility arguing those points. So it’s the places where we aren’t sure that cause most of the controversy. And “sureness” just doesn’t come instantaneously. the scientific community is MORE sure about global climate change than they were 20 years ago, but to say “there’s doubt, so why would we change” is to imply that what we need is the equivalent of blind faith, which is specifically what scientists are in the business of not having.

        What does expertise mean to you then? You rely on experts all the time to keep your world functioning. You’re probably an expert in something yourself, whether it’s heart surgery or what food your spouse can’t stand.

        What you’re railing against is self-important, pompous, self-proclaimed expertise. It’s expertise used for personal self-aggrandizement and advancement, not to do the things that the expertise is fitted for. This is true everywhere, not just in science. Most scientific work is done without fanfare or appearances on talk shows with people who have no idea what they’re talking about.

  • DaraBell

    I want to give a little info on Apples. I worked on Apple farm I didn’t see any dousing competition. I am very environmentally friendly and do prefer org apples but just have to put the record straight.


  • MargaretS

    re: tomatoes “You can also get several types in Tetra Pak boxes, like Trader Joe’s and Pomi” What are these boxes lined with? I recall hearing that juice boxes may be lined with plastic containing BPA. Wouldn’t these be like juice boxes? Buying fresh organic tomatoes seems to be a better suggestion. Glass has contaminants that leach too.

  • CDL

    funny- every potato I have purchased at the regular grocery store that was NOT organic has sprouted…

  • OaklandEasy

    Re: corn fed beef. We all know that chicken feed contains aresenic. The FDA finally admitted it. So the chicken poop they speak of above has aresenic in it. Enough reason to eat organic?

  • OaklandEasy

    And the video doesn’t mention that the corn that is fed to the other cows is geneticlly modified. GMO corn = bad

  • Jamie

    I think they will sprout, but depending on the source, it takes some of them MUCH MUCH longer. I guess I didn’t really think about it until I read this, but most of the time the potatoes I buy get soft and/or shrivel before they’ll sprout. Just like mass produced, packaged bread will mold, but not for a VEEEERY long time. Yuck.

  • Joybells

    We grow our own potatoes, they’re easy, just make sure they stay covered with soil. Keep in a cool dry place, they last most of the winter. People eat way too much meat, instead of eating a big hunk of meat, use it to flavor dishes, it’s cheaper and better for you. Try buying most of what you eat locally, I like it when you can talk to the people who raised it.

  • Hermit

    Re: MargaretS
    If you tell us that glass has contaminants that leach too, then please make us aware of what they are.

    I believe we are misled about the true costs of food. There are many artificial manipulators in the system we rely on for mass food production. Government subsidization allows food to be exported at a cost to consumers lower than can be locally produced. (see: Life and Debt) Shipping foods beyond local market allows us to try many new foods, but also introduces new pests. Dumping surplus product at the source and past “best before” dates keeps prices inflated.
    These are only a few examples regarding the price, but not the overall cost. We pay for generations with the disrespect to our earth and its inhabitants. Our neighbors’ health and vitality is directly related to our activities and mood. Greed for money does not translate to ethical behavior, and certainly does not make it right to introduce artificial additives, minimum wages, or mass production/maketing into something so basic.
    Give me whole, natural, foods at the fair prices the people who forage and grow responsibly need to make a living; and give me the income necessary to spend time nurturing my family. It is a matter of respect!

  • Anita Nelson

    It’s sad that many of these are widely considered to be healthy choices. Who would think “Salmon Farm” would be a bad thing. Despicable.

    • Nic

      Salmon from salmon farms are not only unhealthy for humans but devastating for the environment. Research is key! Check out this great website for more info on salmon farms and how awful they really are. http://www.salmonaresacred.org

  • Mina

    Worry, worry,worry. Will you worry yourselves into early graves? Relax and just live and enjoy life.

    • John Delmonte

      Yup, relax and enjoy your chemotherapy and radiation. It’s fun!

  • GT

    Love the ironic banner for the Hard Rock Cafe “Rock ‘n’ Roll Fun For The Whole Family-Legendary Burgers and Bands”, at the bottom of this article. PS: Grow your own!

  • Lynda Kiwichick

    Sorry to hear about the way your food is treated.
    Our New Zealand Beef is all grown the old fashioned way … on our green grasslands…
    Most sensible New Zealanders have a vegetable garden or fruit trees and grow their own produce organically.
    We new Zealanders are so very lucky to have our land and waterways and a lot of New Zealand is still unpopulated so very natural still..
    Life is very natural in NZ for most of us out of the BIg cities…

  • JL

    There’s a lot that can be done:

    As many have said, grow your own veggies. Do yourself the favor and pleasure of growing and eating your own heirloom tomatoe. You will be amazed at what a tomatoe should look like and especially what it should taste like.

    You would be amazed at how little space is actually needed to have a crop of some vegetables. of course you won’t feed a whole family but it’s a start, if you have more space then…. you set the limits.

    regarding meat… grass-fed does exist and is available in North America. We buy direct from the farmer, no antibiotics, no grains, just grass. We buy a quarter cow at a time. People can share the costs. The meat tastes different and may be a bit tougher… more like what meat of animals that have walked around and lived in a field should be like.

    The cost issue is partly a non-issue. If you can pool resources (multiple buyers, etc.) there is the ninitial high cost to buy the meat but in the end, the costs are comparable to slightly higher than grain-fed industrial meat. It’s certainly cheaper than store-bought organic food in general. The cost of growing your own veggies does not even come close to stoe prices especially after a few years when the initial start-up costs (if any) are amortized multiple times over.

    The other associated cost-saving is the health benefits over the long-term. It is harder to quantify but a not-insignificant consideration.

    If ever there was an area where local efforts have a noticeable effect it is in food production. You can produce your own veggies, eggs, etc and now can find like-minded people easily with the internet. You would be amazed how quickly networks develop and what has been growing under your noses, even in the big cities.

    It takes time and effort. it’s a matter of priorities in our lives to dedicate time to food production and think critically about where your food comes from. Of course, many who have the luxury of time and the knowledge are often the ones with disposable income/time to even consider these alternatives.

    It is easy to often see the local food production discourse as laced with snobbishness and the priviledge of the financially well-off As P said, this world does suck for poor people, but it is possible to do this cheaply and there are many supportive communities of like-minded people who can greatly reduce the costs of local food production.

    Good luck and keep thinking about what lands on your plate.

  • Caroline Miller

    You folks are SO gullible!
    I would advise you all to STOP EATING all together, so that NOTHING kills you!

  • Scott

    I am very thankful that people provide this information, it helps to be informed before you shop these days. nia:wen/thank you

  • Trevor

    So is there any food that is not organic that we can eat. More and more these days it seems like these “Experts” have their hands in on some organic farms and they’re now starting to reap all the benefits. Maybe I’m trolling who knows, but i’ll take the good tasting stuff and just hope my body will deal with it by natural evolution, if not then, well I’ll die happy knowing I had a damn good time eating some of that un-organic delicious tasting stuff.

  • Kerry

    Ahhhhhh….. money versus people…. truth versus illusion…. the world is waking up slowly but surely, as this is what is so wrong with human values… everything is a symptom of this…..
    New Zealand is the same, shocking how childrens health has declined rapidly, and those children have grown up now…. Heal the world by healing your life…… 🙂 Thanks for your post!!

  • Catherine Chisnall

    What about salmon caught in the Pacific? It says on my salmon tin ‘wild salmon caught in the Pacific’. What does that mean- farmed or not?

    • Steve

      Wild Caught means they caught it in the wild–you are fine.

  • eve

    The reason there is so much pesticides and hormones and horribly poisinous food because there are now large dorporations producing foods who are in the oil business etc. only interested in $$$$$$ not your health. In fact I have been doing research on products made for North Americans and they contain chemicals which have been banned in eu countries for years. They can do ti to North Americans because weather they like to hear it or not North American GVT listens to those large corporations NOT THE TAX PAYING people. They are paid off!!!!! They create laws for the rich corporations so they can do as they please. Infact you can say the average taxpayer has become a modern slave work – pay tax and and give us your hard earned dollars so we can give it to the rich corps and fat politicians

  • Rex

    Ignore all the idiotic comments from the militant extremist Vegans and Vegetarians. Calling meat a ‘corpse’ or ‘cadaver’ is completely immature and biased. I could similarly liken harvested vegetable crops to rotting decomposing vegetation. You can make anything sound bad with enough spin on it and Vegans in particular have an agenda, so I wouldn’t listen to any of the clap trap they peddle. Grow up guys and start looking at real unbiased independent science, rather than corporate sponsored propaganda!

  • Clive

    Absolute crap article. Fear-mongering garbage,

    People are living longer than ever before because of safe, nutritious food. The facts speak for themselves.

    • AK scavenger

      Any thought about modern medicine prolonging lives- medications, surgeries? Or how about safety procautions that weren’t around previously, seat belt to name the first that comes to mind.
      The truth of the matter is that we have evolved without many of these chemicals in our diets for a very long time. These recently introduced chemicals into our diets have many indirect effects that can be hard to wrap you head around. For example why are the rates of youth allergies sky rocketing? Obesity is at an all time high, l could go on and on…
      The most importat issue is that we are in fact ingesting chemicals that our body is not familiar with. They may not be toxic to humans at low levels, but since we sit at the apex of the food chain those chemicals build up in our bodies in our fat. They can reach toxic levels over time and most importantly can be passed to a more prone population, the next generation, especially with breast feeding.
      What we eat has drastically changed in the last 50 years (just take a look at grannies cookbook), and on the evolutionary time scale this is nothing Or look even farther into our past as some of you have touched on already. Our bodies haven’t had time to adapt to the cocktail of chemicals we are pumping into them.
      We may live longer now, and modern food science has aided this, with more food available longer and without decaying, but it is not due to soley to modern food. As with anything in this world there are multiple facets to every story. In fact this food ‘surplus’ created by modern food science is only aiding in our demise. The global population is growing exponentially and the excess of food is a major factor in the increase. We have surpassed our global carrying capacity.
      Check your facts, and look at your sources for credibility. A good place to start for more information on this matter is Eric Schlosser, Michael Pollan, or if you don’t want to put in the effort of reading about this issue check out Food,Inc. All have well researched information.

      Eat less, eat plants, eat local, eat in season, eat only foods that you can pronounce the names of their ingredients, support organic, harvest your own food, scavenge

  • TroubleEnsued

    This is an exceptional article. Just when I was beginning to feel that perhaps I could cut corners and not buy as much organic as I have been…I read this. You re-inspired me. Thank you.

  • Tes

    This comment system is awful, so I can’t tell if this is actually replying to Mark Jacobson’s comment about our species being herbivores at heart, which is wrong.




    People need to cite sources when they say things.

  • Mike
  • Rob

    This is a decent roundup but it did leave out quite a few common poisons found in the grocery store though:

    1. Benzoate: a very common preservative that changes to carcinogenic benzene when interacting with ascorbic acid (vitamin C), also a common additive. I have seen the two listed together.

    2. Hydrogenated oil/transfat/shortening: all the cheap peanut butter has it to prevent separation and shelf-life. Diabetes and heart disease in a bottle.

    3. Artificial Food coloring (“Red 10”): many linked to behavioral/emotional disorders like hyperactivity and depression.

    5. High Fructose corn syrup: our bodies do not process it like sugar, contrary to the corn industry PR. Linked to type 2 diabetes. No reason to use it other than a surplus of corn.

    Also there’s unfortunately BPA in jar lids even glass jars and canning lids have them. The manufacturers claim it’s not a safety issue because the food doesn’t come into contact with the lid.

    Michael Pollan has a good rule. If your grandparents (or in our case, our great-grandparents) wouldn’t recognize it as food, don’t eat it!

    • BillH


      1. Benzoate? Really? It does create benzene. But with ascorbic acid? Then EVERY soda on the market will have benzene and kill the person drinking it.

      2. While hydrogenated vegetable oil isn’t good, lower transfats are in peanut butter today.

      3. Artificial food coloring is in almost everything. Don’t be eating your Twizzlers.

      5. Patently false. My wife works in the industry. Study after study is done and your body can’t tell the difference between cane sugar (or beet sugar) and high fructose corn syrup… except that the corn syrup is not as sweet.

      I agree with the Michael Pollan rule you quote, but your other points are very naive and misguided.

  • Viva La Revolucion,

  • foodie

    In most parts of our civilised world, it’s over-populated with people. It would make sense to develop and progress, so that most countries will have excess and available food. However, why is it that so many other countries are poverty stricken?
    There’s definately , an imbalance. We can only do our small bit to make those changes.

    With fisheries, and with slaughter-houses etc, and mass production of food, it deems necessary so that most of society will be fed and have available food. . my only concern though , is that, it’s all great having a mass production of available food – but the way in which it has to be done is not necessarily humane , nor correct , in order to obtain all the vital nutrients in the food as though it were completely ‘organic’ . The issue is that in order to preserve food for shelf-life, we have to have chemical ‘aid’ . We just have to decide for ourselves , what is best, and what is affordable.

    unfortuanately, better, unprocessed foods do seem to be less affordable, so our society is under enormous stress. The risks are obesity, quick and processed foods, heart and other heart-related disease etc.

    I would advise people out there to be aware, and make the healthiest choices for themselves and their kids. After all, eating ie: salmon from a fishery is a lot better than eating macdonalds.
    I would say, do the best you can , within your means, and if you can go for ‘organic’ , unprocessed food, rather do that.

  • Hey everyone, great article… I’ve been reading through the comments, and I just want to say one thing, just to point it out to everyone.

    It’s been said a few times here that the answer is to take responsibility for what we eat, and grow your own food/vegetables.

    I want to remind/inform you all that the company Monsanto, is basically working on dominating the seed industry. They don’t control everything yet, but after all industry level seeds are dominated, you can bet that the public seed sections will begin to be dominated. (Maybe they won’t, it’s a little speculation, but think about it.)

    Monsanto genetically engineers their seeds to be fertile, so farmers can not save their seed for next crop. They have to go back to Monsanto every crop, and buy the seeds.

    If these major power companies are allowed to dominate the very basis of the foundations of life, we’re all doomed, period.

    P.S if you don’t already know, GMO seeds/plants that “mate” with normally grown plants, (Corn pollinates.) it destroys the normal strain as well. Welcome to a lifeless earth, 2000 years from now, when every plant on earth can no longer reproduce.

    Will we let it get that far?
    Is it already too late?

    • Jeff

      Just because Monsanto has been involved in the invention/production of such happy items like saccharin, polyurethanes and agent orange… it doesn’t mean we should at all be worried about them striving to be a monopoly in charge of feeding us.

  • kelly

    everywhere i’ve shopped for milk (in the midwest, plenty of big big corporate stores included!) all the milk (even non-organic) likes to tout the label that it comes from cows NOT treated with growth hormones. is it safe to believe?

  • Nicholass

    This is all nice and good but this food is expensive. What do we people do who aren’t making six figures? Is there no healthy way to eat?
    Is all of life slanted towards the wealthy?

    • AK scavenger

      priorities. i hardly made 5 figures a year and eat mostly organic and self grown foods, i just have to sacrifice the lesser things to me (smartphone, fancy car, nice clothes, etc) it can be done. It just takes a desire for healthy change

      • Mary Hunter

        A reply is needed for AK scavenger #14. The statement ” I hardly made 5 figures a year” shows how out of touch higher income earners are with the average and below average income earners”. Lets’s see, do w/o “smartphone, fancy car, nice clothes etc”. Most of us don’t even have these luxury items and exist on 2 figures a year not 5. So I’m learning and realizing this is divided into a class structure. It does take money to buy more expensive organic food. In alot of cases takes $ away from housing i.e., rental or morgage. I’m motivated to eat healthier but finding it ery difficult on the pocketbook.

  • Heather

    Yes, the healthcare system makes me unabke to afford all organic foods. I grow my own in my yard but is would usually cost me more than double to buy all organic. I cannot afford a $300 a week grocery bill

  • Tony Bowling

    You do not have to go too far to get grass feed beef here in LA as they have it at Vons and Ralphs. The difference (compared to non grass feed beef) is very apparent: It looks different (more red), stays fresher longer, the texture is different, it cooks different and of course it tastes a lot better. It is so different that you would think it came from a different animal.

  • I cannot agree with the corn-fed beef item. It’s the only kind that doesn’t make me sick. I’ll grant you, though, that most beef may also contain artificial growth hormone, to which I seem to be allergic, considering the reaction my bowel has with most milk. (It’s the same reaction I get with non-corn-fed beef, FWIW.)

    • Oh, I should note, too, that some areas feed cattle unsold citrus, which can make the beef highly acidic.

  • Vanessa


  • Grow your own food if you can, and move if you can’t to where you can grow your own. They are trying to sterilize us and make us dull and more easily controlled on purpose through GMO, pesticides, and fluoridated water. (Google Codex Alimentarius and Agenda 21). It is also no accident that people are getting persecuted for turning their yards into vegetable gardens in some places. The good news is, many people have no idea what a potato plant looks like so you may be able to plant them in random places (guerrilla garden). Not all supermarket potatoes won’t sprout. Just keep some around a while, or start with organic ones.

  • Becca

    What about if salmon on a menu says Norwegian? I see that a lot on American menus.

  • Heather

    I recommend reading this excellent book:
    The Urban Food Revolution; Changing the way we Feed Cities, by Peter Ladner. In it, he discusses well-researched solutions to many of the issues in this comment thread, i.e. locally-grown, mass-produced,health problems caused by our food choices, innovative methods, urban farming, roof-top gardens, many different models of community gardens (ideal for apartment dwellers), etc. etc. I urge you to read it, to be informed, and take action!

  • Diana

    I wonder how many women reading this information about the food they put in their bodies will even consider the fact many load their bodies with a Class One Carcinogens everyday – Birth control pills. They’re loaded with artificial estrogen and progestin, which leads to breast cancer. The steroids in Birth control pills are illegal to give to males. Why then is it legal to give them to females?

  • b

    One note– glass jars for tomatoes, even home-canned ones, have LIDS that are lined w/ BPA unless you order special ones from Europe.


  • Organic is a much better bet than beimg sick. Well worth the xtra $. Please share on facebook.as I have. Thank you for posting

  • Mrs. V

    The big elephant in the room that no one is mentioning is how well our government (USDA, FDA) and big businesses profit from our bad health as a nation. It’s one thing to make the connection between pesticides/cost, but what about the connection between these degenerative, chronic and deadly diseases with the ever rising health care costs. The bottom line is good health is bad for business. Our doctors and drug companies would be tough out of luck if we didn’t need them anymore and that’s the bottom line.

  • Dani

    wow! Just wow, I knew about some of these but a few others just shocked me. No more microwave pop corn!

  • Beware the Tetrapak liners for canned tomatoes, too, according to Green Cradle Organic and Natural Products: “Tetra-Paks are, however, indeed more than just sustainably grown cardboard. The paperboard is coated with a so-called polymer…. German studies also found that the Tetra Paks had the same dramatic estrogenic activity leaching into the liquids, presumably from the plastic linings used to coat the paper. Because the manufacturer has only disclosed that it “primarily” uses LDPE plastics, it is impossible to tie down what exactly is the cause of the leached estrogenic hormones. However, in the German Study the Tetra Paks tested indeed not only leached estrogen, but one of the TetraPaks leached it in amounts HIGHER than nearly all of the PET plastics.”

  • Revin

    I love how organic food IS NOT considered conventional, the use of poisons is newer to the realms of reality then just simply growing food. I know when my grandpa was younger organic food was simply called FOOD. Imagine that, not having to worry too much about what you are eating. That must be been nice! We shall dub the food of this era the food of greed and tyranny! I know there have “always” been methods farmers have used to reduce pests, however the chemicals used nowadays are terrible in nature.

    As we all age, our health will slip quicker and quicker. The powers to be care not, they just want us to pay them to die! WE SHALL CHEW OUR WAYS TO THE END!

  • yep

    Non-Organic = Poison

  • Katie

    If the only thing available was organic foods and production was shut down for non-organic, there would be so many more children going hungry. Think about that. There is no way every family could afford organic today, actually very few families could. Even though organic is better for you and I believe it is, what would you do if your home was being foreclosed, continued buying high priced food, I don’t think so!!!

  • Jaclyn Hale

    I am an ER nurse and after reading this, it’s no wonder we have a sickly population.

  • thefactsthough

    I’m not for GMO foods and I think this article is great, if not something that’s been known for quite some time (10 years or even more), but nothing in this article is GMO. To be GMO a change has to have been made at a genetic level. Most of what’s above is simply badly produced food. Some GMO foods are actually beneficial and it’s articles like this that confuse people.

  • It’s amazing how we are being poisoned by the sources of food that so many people blindly trust in.

    This is partly why I’m glad I jumped out of the matrix, now live in Costa Rica in an Eco
    Village – Pachamama http://www.pachamama.com) and life is amazing now…

    I’m taking Ghandi’s advice and “being” the change I want to see in the world 🙂

  • vintagegirl53

    Look, farmer’s do not >have<to do anything…..like the part-time 'farmer' I lived near who did not have to plant GMO corn and soy every year to be able to get a check for 20k from Uncle Sam every couple years to buy…tractors, mowers, planters, trucks, ATVs, new buildings a-n-d yes, a swimming pool!! and house rennovations and on & on….it is the politics of greed. The farmer has no incentive to be ethical or moral or honest about the food he grows. Even in CRP, he can 'cheat' and plant the same thing yr. after yr…nobody is out checking. It is the (dis) honor system! And he is paid by all of us to do it!!
    So, I plant my own organic squash,pumpkins, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, etc. and freeze the xtra in zip locs. If I get a bad yield, I buy as much organic as I can afford from a farmer's market and freeze it. I might have to buy a little from the organic section at Trader Joes. But it can be done on very little money. And it takes very little land, yard area. If your soil is poor , use raised beds. Compost your kitchen waste. Why buy poison and pay to put it in your mouth? The cost in bad health is far to high for any of us!

  • Karen

    Here’s my equation:
    Eat what you want and enjoy it.
    We all gotta go sometime.

  • Janet Blazen


    I farm in Michigan and I can tell you that it “does” cost more to farm the organic way…………no doubt abut it………….If a farmer wants to make money he simply “has” to farm by the conventional method……………..Instead of spraying for insects, you must pick insects off by hand or use yet another type of plant within the crop that wards off the bugs. It isn’t JUST insects either. It’s mold, bacteria, rust, to much rain, to much sun, to wet, to dry, wind etc. most of which can be controlled by the use of chemicals. Even the color of the food is determined by the chemicals that are used. MOST people don’t even know that a RED apple quite often gets it’s color from having a chemical sprayed on it………..After all we are so spoiled in this country and we want our food to be pretty and we don’t really give a damn if it is healthful or not……………

    • Therese

      Wow- so this toksic apples from Argentina are very read ! May be they have grown it organic and the sprayd them to get red !!!!!!!
      Here they did not find out until ALL apples were sold , so I have eaten a LOT of this chemicals…..
      How to get it out of the body again ? I do take Clorella for a few months and the a break etc

    • Jack Williams

      I don’t want my food to be pretty–I want it not be carcinogenic. Is that too much to ask?

    • Anonymous

      Please spend the extra money or whatever you have to do so we can all eat better.

  • DANO

    Then again, life span is almost double what it was a hundred years ago so it’s not a black and white issue here folks. There’s far more to what’s making us sick than the food we eat.

    • Therese

      Well – the people who get old now grew up without all theese chemicals ! But now Young athlets die of heartproblems at 20-25 years !!!!!! May be they ate soya powder to get fit !?!
      Listen to this , it is scary ;


  • Shanda Malesky

    Love your blog!

  • Know wonder we say “crazy Americans” hope you can work this out because Monsanto sucks balls and always will, and there shoving that crap down our necks in Canada.. Monsanto and there kind are like quake grass in the garden. You have to pull all the under ground roots up and burn them or the shit keeps coming up.

  • While I appreciate this attempt to educate us human animals, it is time to REALLY wake-up! We human are not designed to consume animals and/or their milk or potential fetuses (eggs): http://vitalveda.wordpress.com/our-beliefs-meat-and-dairy-mad-consumers-the-facts-plant-based-diet/

  • Totally agree about the farmed salmon and traditional CAFO beef. Wouldn’t touch it!

  • iamsofaking

    I love how many of you make it sound so simple to just eat organic. I know in my city it would cost nearly double my weekly grocery bill to eat organic and it just is not in our budget. Many of this nation live from check to check and just plain is don’t have enough money to afford to eat organically. Keep those with lower incomes sick and you don’t have to worry about them come retirement age.

    • Vikt

      OR…get a second job or better yet, start a part-time (online or off) second means of income. Never in the history of this planet has it been easier to make money. Although at the same time, the level of excuse-making has also risen. You seem to be in the second group (along with all the other Bernie fans).

      • Anonymous

        Well, you are someone who has never had to truly struggle. I make $15 an hour and i work overtime every week, and I still have trouble paying my rent and other bills when they are all put together. I am going to make the change, but don’t act like you know what everyone’s financial situation is or that you know how to change it. Now, even more than ever, it is harder for people with no money to make money. P.S. I’m a Bernie fan. And even when he doesn’t win, those of us in this society who want to make things better will. He has started a fire in this country and it is spreading. Oh, how it is spreading.

        • Vikt

          I guarantee you have talents that you aren’t getting paid your fair share for (Not the fake “fair share” that’s talked about at your Bernie rallies; I’m talking about the fair market share that people or businesses will pay for if you develop and sell it to them).

          You need to find/develop those talents to sell to the marketplace. Don’t give up. It sounds like you are a hard worker if you are working a lot of overtime. Most people don’t even do that. The Bernie fraud movement will only end up causing situations like what’s happening in Venezuela. Ask the people who live there what his ideas are like.

  • Therese

    In Norway we have found “toksic” eco apples several times ! Origian is ARGENTINA and it is a EU office who sertify them as ORGANIC .
    But then they are full of pestisides ! Even more then conventional apples grown here .
    It is very bad that it has happened several times!

  • AnneHallam

    These videos have opened my eyes about GMO.
    Dr Vandana Shiva – Indian Scientist http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iq6jpkDNxtI&feature=related
    Uploaded by UCtelevision on Jul 3, 2008
    Scientist and activist Vandana Shiva, and/or Part 1 – The Future of Food

  • It’s simple really, where would you like to spend your money? Would you rather spend your hard earned money on food, or medical bills? Going organic is not as expensive as everyone seems to think it is. Get your priorities straight, food should be at the top of your list. I eliminated expensive household cleaners and use baking soda & vinegar to clean my house. The money we’ve saved goes to pay for better food. We also cook most of our meals at home instead of eating out. We’re not rich we just make an effort to make sure we’re eating safe healthy foods.