Wal-Mart Will be The Largest Seller of Organic Food, Driving Prices Down: Is This a Good Thing?

While, at first glance, this sounds like a good, no actually great announcement, many experts like Marion Nestle and the head of the Organic Consumers Industry are concerned Wal-Mart will become a highly negative force for the organic food movement.

Because Wal-Mart has a major history of abusive practices, their entry into the organic food market may activate market forces that could devastate small organic farmers.

This will be especially true if they start outsourcing food from China where organic enforcement standards are close to non-existent. Now, it is not that I am opposed to selling Chinese goods (that's why we're able to have such low prices on many of the products we offer on our site).

But there is a major difference between light bulbs and organic food. With manufactured goods, it is very easy to check the quality. On organic foods, however, this is much more difficult to do.

This really concerns me. So much so, today I am making a commitment to have my private research organization, the Mercola Foundation, purchase a wide variety of organic produce from Wal-Mart, when they are available, to check the level of pesticides and the amount of nutrients in the organic foods they are selling.

So, congratulations Wal-Mart for responding to the pressure that we helped create. I applaud your move. But if you even think of using the evil tactics you have consistently demonstrated in the past that are so brilliantly documented in the movie expose Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price, I will do everything in my power to publicize your fraud.

But I can tell you right now, I don't need any laboratory to tell me that organic Rice Krispies are not healthy for you.

Always remember, just because someone slaps an organic label on a food product, that label does not somehow magically transform a junk food into a health food. Organic sugar and processed foods are every bit as pernicious to your health as conventional sugar and processed foods.

New York Times May 12, 2006 Registration Required

The (Lakeland, Fla.) Ledger May 12, 2006

BusinessWeek Online March 29, 2006

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