DEFRA secretary, David Miliband, has sparked debate by saying that there is no evidence to prove that organic food is more nutritious than conventional produce.

In an interview with The Sunday Times on 7 January, Mr Miliband described organic food as a “lifestyle choice”. 

“It’s only 4% of total farm produce, not 40%, and I would not want to say that 96% of our farm produce is inferior because it’s not organic,” he said.

The Soil Association criticised Mr Miliband’s comments as “insulting” and “patronising”.

But many of the contributors to FWi’s forums have given their backing to Mr Miliband.

“Organic food is a lifestyle choice for the more wealthy in our community,” said Sion.

“The population should not be made to feel that the conventional food they buy is inferior or less safe if they cannot or choose not to buy organic food, because overwhelming scientific evidence says that conventional food is safe.”

Organic farmer Chips said he agreed with that viewpoint. But he added: “Organic is just differentiating itself from the generic commodity that is conventional farming – not British Farming which is far superior to that.

“Generic commodity prices are set by the lowest possible price in the world that producers will accept. I don’t think that what the Soil Association say about conventional farming effects the price British conventional farmers receive one bit (I may be wrong).”

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