Monday, November 10, 2008

Spending Your Organic Dollar Wisely

"Who could have missed the cow with the dollar bills hanging out of his mouth on the cover of the business section last weekend? Cute? Yes. But the message was a serious downer. It turns out the economy is making us all second-guess every purchase we make -- including what we eat. Nielsen Company, a market research firm, reported that organic food sales rose only 4 percent in the four week period ending October 4th, compared to 20 percent a year in recent years. What's keeping shoppers from purchasing organic food? Cost. No question. And who can blame them? But let's understand why and what we can do about it. Organic food usually will cost at least 50 percent more than conventionally grown food and sometimes much more than that. There are several reasons, some of them pretty surprising.

First, organic food is more expensive to produce. Without cheap fertilizers and pesticides, farmers have to do a lot more manual labor, and people are much more expensive than petrochemicals. Additionally, organic farming operations aren't big enough to achieve economies of scale."

Read the article