I was lucky to spend quite some time and acquire insight in the large-scale and small-scale food businesses. The industry is changing, but I continue to wonder: is organic food really worth its price? And if so, what are the most effective distribution channels? Stands is supermarkets, specialty stores, mercados?
The organic food, known also as "bio", "eco" or "certified food" is offered at prices anywhere between 30% to 300% above the conventional food. Usually explained through higher production costs, which is not always true, and higher nutritional/health value - which is also not always true. So what is true?
It is grown/produced on certified farms and processed in certified plants. It contains less chemicals than conventional food, but regulations still allow a broad list of additives. It does not contain GMO-s or its derivatives. It is produced on smaller-scale farms and companies, usually family-run, but this one feature is changing rapidly. Organic is moving away from its romantic beginnings and is growing into a mature big business with its aggresive cost reduction, marketing tricks and global sourcing.
So my question is - can we as consumers get the original benefits of organic food, without being economically drained? In other words - can a food production system find a new way of making, moving and selling high quality, wholesome, trusted food without the avoidable cost or exuberant margins of the organic thing?