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Costa Rican report:
$6 million of fake organic fruit sold to US
According to Costa Rican lawmakers, it is currently extremely hard to know whether food certified by the US Department of Agriculture is actually organic. They have investigated bogus organic pineapple exports to the United States; a Costa Rican congressional committee says American consumers paid premium prices for more than $6 million in pineapples sold as organic but grown with banned chemicals.
The findings confirmed NerdWallet's own investigation into the pineapple scheme last year citing the flaws it revealed in the USDA organics labelling process. NerdWallet reported conflicts of interest and mismanagement in USDA regulation of the $43 billion US organics industry.
A report by the Costa Rican legislators blasted one particular pineapple producer and two companies that certified the exports as organic, accusing one of them of colluding with the producer and lying during sworn public testimony.
No system is perfect, but customers do have ways to find truly organic food, like making sure they buy locally sourced produce and using resources watchdog groups have compiled to help consumers navigate the organics industry.
An article on nasdaq.com urges consumers to stay abreast of the national drive to stop fraud and support the organic farming industry.
Publication date: 7/3/2018
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