Is organic always better? 5 common organic myths busted

by Purora GmbH & Co KG

Do you know that? When it comes to organic food, the fronts are often hardened. While for some organic is the only truth and beyond all doubt, others label it as a privilege of the upper class or an organic niche. The fact that opinions differ so much has a lot to do with the fact that a whole lot of myths have spread around the topic of organic products that have persisted. Let's take a closer look at what's actually behind it.


Organic is always the more expensive choice  

For a long time, the range in organic shops was reserved for very health-conscious people and the wealthy, or at least the prices differed significantly from the prices of conventional groceries. Due to the organic trend of the past decades, the range of organic brands and farmers has increased significantly and even in discount stores there are now brands with an organic seal, which differ little in price from the conventional alternatives for some products .

As a result, the myth that organic is always considerably more expensive is only true to a limited extent and is only true for some products. Especially since winter 2022, many chemical fertilizers have also become significantly more expensive due to the rapid increase in energy costs. This, in turn, has a direct impact on the price of the food that relies on it. In other words: the price of organically produced food has also risen, but not as much as for conventional products, since they are less energy-intensive: organic products can serve as a brake on inflation , so to speak.

One last thought on the question of cost : Even if organic products are often a bit more expensive from a purely financial point of view, the overall price is actually cheaper - namely, if you take into account the price that the environment involuntarily has to pay with industrial agriculture.

organic products are healthier than others  

That's true, but you should be careful here to argue with the right facts. It has been scientifically proven that organically farmed food is virtually free of pesticides and other chemical fertilizer residues. This is definitely an important factor for our health. They also contain fewer nitrates, which can potentially harm us humans.


When it comes to the nutrient content of organic and conventional foods, however, opinions differ. However, some studies have already proven that the vitamin content of organic products is also significantly better.

Organic equals organic

Not everything that shines with a seal of approval is organic - unfortunately. Most retail chains now have their own organic labels or environmental certificates that promise organic or sustainable quality. So it is difficult to decide which of them you can really trust. With its seal of approval database , the Südwind association offers you a good source to check what really lies behind the promises of the respective seal of approval and whether the criteria are also checked by independent bodies.


Organic and regional are equal in terms of sustainability  

In the perception of many consumers, the Austrian apple from conventional agriculture is the more sustainable choice than the organic one from New Zealand. But the "where from" says nothing about the "how". The term "from regional cultivation" does not provide any information about which pesticides the local apple was contaminated with or how and for how long it was stored.

In the case of animal products, it is also not clear whether the animals were fed, for example, with soy feed from South America and what their living conditions are like. In fact, the climate balance of organic food with long transport routes can be better than that of regional products without certification.

Because if you look at the greenhouse gas emissions from food production as a whole, transport “only” accounts for around 10% on average. While organic production methods have a positive effect on the climate and global resources, mere regionality does not make a product sustainable.


You ca n't feed the whole world with organic food

One of the most common organic myths that you can now confidently clear up. Is it really unrealistic to think that everyone in the world should go organic? No. The dream of an earth without aggressive pesticides, factory farming and the like is not nearly as unrealistic as skeptics like to make it out to be. Reference is often made here to the lower yields of organic agriculture and the increasing world population, of which too many people are already at risk of starvation.

In the long term, however, a change in nutritional strategy is actually the only way to guarantee our security of supply in the future. Because the exploitation of the earth, the deforestation of rainforests and the use of toxic fertilizers harm the planet and thus - through global warming - also ourselves.

It is important to turn two screws here: food waste and meat consumption. Because these two factors contribute most to damaging the environment and making the global food supply unequal. For the production of animal feed, for example, huge areas are required to grow soybeans. Again and again, large parts of the global rainforest fall victim to the meat industry. According to this study , a global supply of organic food would be possible if we consumed a third less meat and discarded around half less food.

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Conclusion : Lots of disinformation and lots of potential

You have certainly heard many of the organic myths mentioned here yourself – and perhaps also believed them. Of course, there is a lot more disinformation about organic farming floating around in society and especially on the internet. Therefore: Do not immediately believe everything you read or are told. Make sure the source is trustworthy and preferably related to scientific studies. And: Enlighten your friends and family about organic myths so that word gets around more about the great potential this lifestyle has for our planet, our climate and our health.

Organic is also very important to us, which is why we only use ingredients from certified organic farming in our puroras and snack products, without any additives or preservatives. You can find more about this in our product range and the company vision , as well as on the website of the association " Austria suitable for grandchildren ".

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