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Why organic study misses the mark

Tom Douglas argues a recent study on the benefits of organic neglects something more important: Mother Earth. (AP file photo)

A recent study finding minimal health benefits from eating organic continues to draw criticism, as many argue it misses the mark.

The study found that organic foods did not offer significantly more nutritional benefits or added food safety when compared with conventionally grown crops. But noted chef and Seattle Kitchen show co-host Tom Douglas argues we should be looking at the impact of conventional agriculture on the earth in addition to nutrition facts.

“You go by cornfields and the stalks are not even three inches apart and they’re six feet tall. Can you imagine what that’s taking out of the earth?” says Douglas, co-host of Seattle Kitchen.

Tom says that, with the earth facing so many challenges, the benefits of eating organic extend far beyond the table.

“Right now we have honeybees in distress, we’ve got rivers that are polluted, dead zones in the sea and the ocean, and Hood Canal with lots of lack of oxygen,” he says.

Tom, as well as many others, argues that many of these problems are the result of conventional farming practices, such as farm runoff.

“If you can afford it, yeah I’d like to see it because to me it’s just about taking on Mother Earth and treating her kindly,” says Tom.

Co-host Thierry Rautureau agrees. “It’s an A to Z story, not an A to B. It’s what happens the whole rest of the story.”

He argues the focus should be on sustainable agriculture.

“You take something out, you put something back in, that’s the process of the earth. It’s not a very complicated story that we have made very complicated,” says Thierry.

Listen to the full conversation on the Seattle Kitchen Show:

Find more Seattle Kitchen here and listen to Theirry Rautureau and Tom Douglas Saturdays at 2 p.m.- 4 p.m. and Sundays at 10 a.m.- noon on 97.3 KIRO FM.

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