Consumers and producers should know them and take a knowledgeable decision before considering which products to consume.
Bio foods are known to be very healthy, but aside from that how much better are bio foods from regular produce?
Advantages or disadvantages about particular items depend on personal tastes, beliefs and choices. Bio food, when grown and dealt with much skill and care, can offer many advantages, with that, bio food also has a few disadvantages. Consumers and producers should know them and take a knowledgeable decision before considering which products to consume.
If you are skeptic, or unsure about a product, make sure to ask the suppliers/vendors about its origins, freshness or any other relevant information you may need.
Advantages of Bio Food
Vitamins, minerals and other supplements are important for the human body and deficiencies of these nutrients can result in serious health problems. Therefore it is recommended that each person should eat at least five fruits and vegetables per day.
The problem is that in many cases eating more fruits and vegetables means consuming more acids and toxins in our body. The intake of processed foods with chemicals, pesticides, processed fertilisers only aggravate people’s health. Especially pregnant women are not advised to consume those foods with lots of chemicals as this may affect the baby.
The biggest advantage of bio products is that it does not contain preservatives, chemical additives and toxins. Compared to other products, organic food is not genetically modified, meaning there are no changes from its natural state and therefore no chemicals are ingested into our bodies.
Better Taste and Quality
Bio foods are said to taste better compared to processed food and also have better nutritional value. Most people who have tried them do not return back to eating mass produced, commercial foods again.
Easy to Identify
As time goes by and people become more aware and health conscious, supermarkets are providing special shelves or sections for bio foods only. Stricter packaging and labeling laws make the product distinct, so it is easily identifiable.
Organic farming is where no cruelty and injustices are done to animals. Animals are given liberty and are fed with bio foods such as: hay and maize. Thus the meat or poultry obtained is free from toxic chemicals and hormones.
Cultivating organic vegetation also means keeping the balance of the soil. The soil does not absorb chemicals, and accordingly bio-agriculture promotes the growth of beneficial microorganisms. In other words bio products are more environmental friendly.
Disadvantages of Bio Food
Critics say that the main disadvantage of organic food is that it is not as productive as food grown by modern methods. They also claim that bio food does not offer the same visual and taste benefits as of the genetic engineered products, some studies have been carried out, stating that additional nutritional value does not necessarily lead to improved health.
Bio food offers lower productivity per acre and are more costly to grow and to produce than non organic foods. These added costs are passed on to the consumer who has to pay higher prices and some people may not be able to afford these products.
Shorter Shelf Life
Bio products do not contain preservatives, which means that foods get spoiled quickly and this is quite a big disadvantage. But on the other hand preservatives are unhealthy, so this can be argued to be a catch 22.
Hard to Find
In our local reality, one additional factor we should take into account is that not every grocery shop provides bio foods. Sometime it is not practical to consume bio products for the simple reason that this requires a lot of travelling and searching for them.
The popularity of bio products is on the rise and more and more people are changing to using bio products in their restaurants and in their homes.
Some thoughts on Bio Food and alternatives
It is accepted by many that it is worth using new technology to create genetically engineered products that are bigger, tastier and resistant to parasites. Some argue why not take advantage of the existing technologies like we do in any other field and use that to modify our food and make it better.
The EU forbids the use of genetic technology because it is feared that not much is known on the environmental impact of growing these modified products, especially the impact on surrounding vegetation.
As it seems, the future of bio foods globally and in Mauritius is quite bright. The popularity of bio products is on the rise and more and more people are changing to using bio products in their restaurants and in their homes.
Needless to say that if one can be sure the food is authentically organic and can also afford to buy it, then bio food is the preferable and recommended food choice.