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organic strawberries  (Source:
Organically managed soils are more genetically diverse and healthier as well

A study published last year claimed that organic food has no additional health benefits over non-organic food. But now, a new study not only shows that organic strawberries offer more nutritional value than conventional strawberries, but they also make soil healthier. 

The study from last year, which was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and led by Dr. Alan Dangour, claimed that organic chicken, beef, milk, fruit and vegetables do not provide any additional nutritional advancement to a person's diet. According to Dangour and his team, there is a small number of nutritional differences between organic and non-organic foods, such as the fact that organic foods have more phosphorous. But Dangour insists that phosphorous is available in everything people eat and is "not important for public health."

"Acidity is also higher in organic produce, but acidity is about taste and sensory perception and makes no difference at all for health," said Dangour. "Our review indicates that there is currently no evidence to support the selection of organically over conventionally-produced foods on the basis of nutritional superiority."

Now a new study challenges Dangour's research, but only where strawberries are concerned. According to the new study, which was published in PLoS One and lead by Washington State University, organic strawberries are more nutritious and flavorful than those that are grown through chemical-laden farming. Also, organic strawberries leave soil genetically diverse and healthier. 

Ninety percent of the U.S. strawberry crop is grown on farms in California, so the Washington State researchers analyzed 31 biological and chemical soil properties and soil DNA as well as the quality, nutrition and taste of three types of strawberries on 13 chemical farms and 13 organic farms.

The results of their research were that organic strawberries had a longer shelf life, much higher antioxidant activity, more dry matter and higher concentrations of ascorbic acid and phenolic compounds than non-organic strawberries. In addition, anonymous testers were asked to taste the different kinds of strawberries, and many of them found that one type of organic strawberries has sweeter and better flavor than the others, as well as a better appearance.

When analyzing the soil these organic strawberries were grown in, the researchers found that this organically managed soil had greater genetic diversity, and also beat the non-organic soil in terms of carbon sequestration, micronutrients, microbial biomass and enzyme activity.  

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RE: Soil DNA?
By Mitch101 on 9/6/2010 10:36:12 AM , Rating: 2
Penn and Teller BS: Organic Food Myths Debunked (Excerpt)

RE: Soil DNA?
By Malhavoc on 9/6/2010 11:19:57 AM , Rating: 4
The truth of the matter is that both sides of the fence can show what they want with numerous studies. I more on the side of I don't give a @#@!. I am more concerned with getting local fresh produce whenever I can. The closer I am to the source (whether organic or conventional) is what fuels my purchase. The price of agricultural chemicals drives adoption reduce input management. They aren't cheap anymore and are more often used when needed only (at least where I live).

I happen to live in a greenbelt so that works for me. Will I buy organic? Sure if it is fresher than my other options.

Also, I am not 100% familiar with US organic standards. In Canada (at least Ontario), you are certified Organic or you are not. When (and if) I go to the grocery store, we also have different labelling requirements for country of origin.

If I see something from US, I know that it is either packed or re-packed in the US and could come from somewhere else.

RE: Soil DNA?
By FredEx on 9/7/2010 8:43:09 PM , Rating: 2
Hopping in here since I pretty much agree with what you say, and...

I'm in southwestern Michigan and there are plenty of road side farm markets around here. I buy local produced to support the farmers. It also tastes much better. Some farms are small organic farms and their stuff is better since they being a smaller operation they are not out there picking stuff before it is fully ripened. No middle man when I'm hitting their road side stands.

My EX planted a garden this year and went a bit too far, so I have benefited. She has way more than she and her mom can use. Friends have their own gardens, so hard to give it away. She is always bringing over produce and it is the best, totally ripened on the plant. Often since she is in school again and working, she calls and I go over and pick it myself. I have never had produce that taste as good out of any store.

I see some talking about milk. Any savings in fat is good for people, especially those that need to reduce fat, such as some heart patients or folks with problem cholesterol. I'm diabetic, so I can't handle lactose since it converts to a sugar. I already had a problem with lactose anyway, if I had a glass of cow's milk, whole fat or less, I might as well drink it sitting on the toilet for the next 4 hours. That goes back as far as I can remember. I had to be a breast milk baby.

I prefer a certain brand of soy milk. It is low fat, no lactose and any of it in the brand is lower sugar than cow's milk. I get their offering that has no added sugar which ends up being 1 gram of sugar per serving. Cow's milk gives me a sugar buzz.

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