The good news is that organic food is catching on more and more. People are not only seeking out this type of natural produce and other food ingredients, they are displaying a willingness to pay more for it.
The bad news is that the increasing popularity and higher prices are attracting crooks. Big surprise, huh?
According to the Associated Press, California is seeing, and cracking down on, organic food fraud.
Higher prices for organic produce give farmers an incentive to look for ways around the costly and time-consuming organic certification process. The result can be shoppers who don’t get what they pay for and true organic producers who are undersold by conventional farmers with lower production costs.
Packaged food in the supermarket is heavily regulated, so the likelihood of being cheated there is small. But how can you tell whether that ugly tomato in the farmers market is really organic or just a conventionally grown cast-off? That’s the problem. You can’t. However, if you are a regular farm stand customer, and you get the know the person you’re buying from, the more likely it is that you can trust that person when they tell you it’s organic. Also, you get the chance to ask questions, which might reveal some information that will be a clue as to whether the seller is on the up and up.