Do you search out “natural” foods for your family, hoping to avoid toxic chemicals, pesticides and genetically engineered grains? You’ll be interested in a new report the watchdog Cornucopia Institute.
They found a number of things going on in the cereal aisle that could be undermining your efforts to find a healthy breakfast.
• Companies switching from “certified organic” to “natural.” When a product displays the USDA’s “certified organic” logo you know it is free from petrochemical-based fertilizers, sewage sludge, synthetic pesticides and genetically modified crops. But there is no official definition of “natural,” and no official standards are enforced for products with that label.
• Products with “natural” on the label containing pesticides and genetically modified crops. Kashi, Mother’s, Nutritious living, Barbara’s Bakery and 356 were among brands containing 25%-100% genetically engineered ingredients.
• Companies with “natural” products priced as high or higher than certified organic products. Many leading “natural” brands are manufactured by giant agribusiness (Kellogg’s, Pepsico), but are priced like boutique organics. Meanwhile, two of the least expensive products in the cereal aisle – from Nature’s Path and Food for Life – are certified organic.