Wednesday, January 15, 2014

So "organic" means "contains organisms," I guess

Jason Allen shared something from that well-known business publication Mother Jones. However, Tom Philpott's article is certainly relevant to business, disclosures, and truth in advertising. Excerpts:

[W]hile preparing my recent piece on the recent blockbuster Consumer Reports study on supermarket chicken and antibiotic-resistant bacteria. I learned that at the industrial hatcheries that churn out chicks for the poultry industry, eggs are commonly injected with tiny amounts of an antibiotic called gentamicin....

Now that was surprising enough, but Philpott was really surprised when he learned something else.

The practice is allowed in organic production, too.

Philpott clarifies that the eggs aren't sold as organic eggs, but meat from the chickens that hatch from the eggs are sold as organic.

Be sure to read Philpott's article. Among other things, it contains some speculation as to why the gentamicin is injected - and it may not just be for antibiotic reasons.

In addition to sterilizing the egg, [Robert Martin from Johns Hopkins] pointed to another possible benefit of the injections—that they "probably aid in rapid growth of the chick in the egg"—i.e., growth promotion....

I fully expect Alex Rodriguez to be downing a dozen eggs a day shortly.
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