A group of researchers from a number of respected institutes has concluded after two years that chickens raised on organic food are no healthier than ordinary factory-farmed birds.

This news, farming minister Gerda Verburg told the Volkskrant, is disappointing. Consumers, she says, want to know if organic food is better for them, as well as being good for the environment.
By checking the health of organic-fed chickens against fowl reared on junk food, the minister had hoped to establish whether or not people who have an organic diet are healthier than those who don’t.
But it’s quite a leap to assume that what applies to chickens might also apply to humans.
And the Volkskrant’s story does not say if the chickens on an organic diet were allowed all the other perks of being raised organically – such as being allowed to keep their beaks and peck outside, as well as the freedom from being pumped full of drugs. After all, all these factors have a considerable effect on chickens’ health too.
But there was one positive aspect that emerged from the research. The organic-fed chickens were thinner than those fed on ordinary chicken food.
In a world obsessed by food and obesity, if anything could give an extra boost to the organic industry, surely it would be the ‘scientifically proven fact’ that an organic diet keeps you slim.

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