The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Advertisement
The Northgate district right adjacent to the Texas A&M campus houses a street of bars and other restaurants.  
Programs look to combat drunk driving
Alexia Serrata, JOUR 203 contributor • May 10, 2024
Advertisement
Sophomore Nicole Khirin swings on Friday, April 12, 2024, at Mitchell Tennis Center. (Adriano Espinosa/The Battalion)
Aggies ace Volunteers to advance to final
Mathias Cubillan, Sports Writer • May 19, 2024

The No. 13 Texas A&M women’s tennis team took on No. 16 Tennessee in the semifinal of the NCAA Tournament on Saturday, May 18 at the Greenwood...

Advertisement
Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
Bee-hind the scenes
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • May 1, 2024

The speakers turn on. Static clicks. And a voice reads “Your starting lineup for the Texas A&M Aggies is …” Spectators hear that...

Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
'I was terrified'
April 25, 2024
Scenes from 74
Scenes from '74
April 25, 2024
Advertisement
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The Battalion May 4, 2024

Organic benefits weigh students’ decisions

 
 

Besides the various brand-name foods and flashy packaging that influences many students spending decisions when grocery shopping, a different preference is beginning to make or break the choice between one food and the other: organic, or not?
Organic foods have slowly assimilated into mainstream culture over the past decades as both public and private sectors have responded to the growing interest. The movement is most visibly seen in the wide variety now available in grocery stores, the emergence of self-professed organic suppliers such as Whole Foods and the passing of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act in 2010.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture defines organic food as produce grown on land without the use of pesticides, fertilizers or chemicals. In addition to these guidelines, the farmers who produce organic food must emphasize the use of renewable resources and the conservation of soil and water. Many students go organic because it seems like the healthier option.
I buy organic food when Im able to, said Taylor Walling, senior mathematics major. It doesnt necessarily taste better than [conventionally] produced foods, but I feel better about eating it because I dont like the thought of putting man-made or synthesized foods into my body.
But does eating organic actually have a positive health impact?
Eating organic is a consumer preference, said Linda Talley, lecturer at Texas A&Ms Department of Nutrition and Food Science. [Science] is unable to prove whether foods popularly defined as organic are nutritionally any different than food produced through conventional means Consumers view pesticides as a huge problem, but when was the last time you heard of a pesticide poisoning case?
A more significant determinant for food health is not whether the food is organic, but how consumers handle it after purchase.
Talley said there are 48 million cases of foodborne illness in the U.S. ever year, primarily from bacteria. She said the number could be cut drastically if consumers handled their food properly by storing it at the designated temperatures or washing it before consumption.
However, the current scientific consensus does not completely undermine the possible health aspect of organic foods.
Theres a lot of controversy on the topic, said Weston Porter, associate professor at the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. Its a healthy argument. [Mass-produced foods] can introduce compounds not normally made by the body, which could affect reproduction and cause cancer. However, cancer rates have actually been going down and there havent been any population changes.
Some students said eating organic foods is not about nutritional value, but about a lifestyle choice.
I eat organic food whenever I can, said Berkay Basagaoglu, freshman biomedical engineering major. Its mostly for psychological benefit. I consider eating organic as a part of an overall healthy lifestyle to put my body in the best shape possible.
Porter said that using organic production techniques does not have the ability to maintain high-yield to feed our population. The benefits of mass-produced food outweigh the risks by far and without them, we would not be able to feed the world.
It isnt cost [efficient] for me, Walling said. Organic foods are usually too expensive to buy on a regular basis, especially since I have no regular source of income as a college student.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *