6 September 2000
FSA ‘seeks to undermine organics ’

By FWi staff

THE FOOD Standards Agency is seeking to protect the status quo and undermine alternatives, claims a director of a leading organic research centre.

Writing in The Guardian, Lawrence Woodward, director of the Elm Farm Research centre, Hamstead Marshall, Berks, rejects FSA claims that organic food has no proven nutritional benefits.

He claims a recent FSA paper on the subject says more about the wobbles within the agency than it does about organic farming.

Mr Woodward says the FSA ignores numerous investigations and has not cleared up unfounded concerns over the risk of E coli from organic food.

He suggests researchers may have found it difficult to work in a politically sensitive area and the final draft was written by someone with a different agenda.

Mr Woodward claims the FSA has not developed a challenging culture or voice using selective evidence to protect the status quo and raise doubts about alternatives.