13th April 2011

Organic Food Given “Health Halo” By Consumers: Researchers


Jenny Wan-Chan Lee, a graduate student at Cornell, put on a very interesting experiment which gave 144 people at a mall the opportunity to taste-test chocolate sandwich cookies, plain yogurt, and potato chips. While all of the items were organic, for the purposes of the study Lee labelled some of the items as “conventional” and some as “organic”.

Wan-Chan Lee specializes in social psychology, and found that invariably the participants found that the foods labelled “organic” tasted better, and they thought that they would be lower in calories and fats, even though there is usually no difference between organic cookies and chips and conventional cookies and chips in the fat and calorie departments.

The study cautions us to not use the organic label to justify purchasing foods that are bad for us, a practice I know I am guilty of myself. How many other greenies out there throw caution to the wind if your local health food store is selling cookies and chips?

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