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Is organic food better for you?

The scientific debate has been raging for years, to the point where it’s hard to know what to believe. Sue Quinn gets to the root of the argument

THE SANE VIEW

As a nation we’ve been filling our shopping baskets with certified organic food for more than 40 years. Demand is higher than ever – UK sales exceeded £2 billion in 2016. Partly driving the trend is the belief that food grown without synthetic pesticides or fertilisers is more nutritious and healthier than coventionally grown food. But is it?

Proponents of organic diets argue that using synthetic pesticides and herbicides degrades the quality of the soil and crops and leaves behind potentially harmful residues on produce. They also claim that the higher-welfare farming methods required for organic certification in the UK result in meat and milk that are more nutritious than nonorganic equivalents.

Sceptics counter that by saying there’s no robust proof to show eating organic food makes us healthier than eating non-organic. The higher levels of some nutrients in organically produced meat and dairy, they say, have more to do with the feed and lifestyle the animals enjoy than the absence of synthetic chemicals in their diet and environment.

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About delicious. Magazine

Mamma mia! July is delicious. magazine’s Italian issue and it’s packed with recipes from the world’s favourite cuisine. There are summer dishes from Eleonora Galasso, Giorgio Locatelli, Theo Randall, Gennaro Contaldo, Ursula Ferrigno, Sabrina Gidda and the godfather, Antonio Carluccio. Plus, there’s classic Tuscan food and a romantic menu from Venice as well as ‘nduja stuffed pork roast and three easy lasagnes. And don’t miss our cocktail-based desserts from Italian drinks – anyone for Limoncello drizzle cake or Negroni granita?