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Flood of organic imports has US farmers concerned, asking for more scrutiny of overseas growers

| | February 23, 2017
This article or excerpt is included in the GLP’s daily curated selection of ideologically diverse news, opinion and analysis of biotechnology innovation.

Organic grain is flooding into the U.S., depressing prices and drawing complaints from domestic organic farmers who fear their harvests are held to stricter standards than foreign-raised crops.

The rising imports reflect how U.S. consumers’ appetite for organic products, which are produced without synthetic pesticides, genetically engineered seeds, and certain fertilizers, are challenging food companies to keep up.

U.S. organic-farming groups say that influx of foreign grain has been a chief factor in slashing prices for organic corn by about 30% in 2016, along with a 20% decline for organic soybeans. Those declines came despite robust growth in U.S. sales of organic foods—and far underperformed prices for nonorganic corn and soybeans. USDA-certified organic food sales in 2016 climbed 10% to $12.3 billion, versus a 0.7% increase in conventional grocery sales….

Some organic farmers in the U.S. contend that overseas organic farms benefit from looser oversight, giving them an edge over domestic farms. They point to past failures among foreign-based organic operations in following U.S. organic standards, and occasional cases of fraud. Now U.S. groups want U.S. authorities to step up scrutiny of organic operations in Turkey and other Eastern European countries, and provide more support for U.S. organic farmers.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: Organic Food Sales Are Booming; Why Are American Farmers Crying Foul? (PAY WALL)

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