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Fake Chinese organics try to slip into US market

(NaturalNews) There seems to be no shortage of fraud coming out of China these days, with a recent report issued by the non-profit Cornucopia Institute (CI) stating that a certain Chinese agricultural supplier has attempted to export fake organic products into the U.S. The report states that the supplier forged fake organic certification documents in an effort to capitalize on the large and growing U.S. market for organic products.

According to the report, the Chinese agricultural marketer attempted to sneak non-organic products into the U.S. using fake certifications that appeared to be issued by the National Organic Program (NOP), the official USDA certification standard for organics. The supplier also forged the name of a French USDA accredited certifying agency in the documents as well.

“Unfortunately, this incident … serves as a stark reminder that imports from China are fraught with peril,” said Mark A. Kastel, co-director of CI. Charlotte Vallaeys, lead author of the report, added that the incident “illustrates why so many responsible processors and marketers in the organic industry shun organic imports.”

The announcement comes at the same time as another recent media report has been issued concerning Chinese companies mass producing and selling fake, plastic rice and this is all on top of numerous other Chinese cases of melamine contamination of food, fake drugs, and toxic farmed fish that have all made headlines in recent years.

Many are urging the USDA to take a more active approach in ensuring that anything coming from China, especially food products that are supposedly organic, be fully inspected and regulated. Some are even calling for an immediate moratorium on all organic imports from China.

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Where Will the Food Come From!

WASHINGTON (AFP) – A growing, more affluent population competing for ever scarcer resources could make for an “unrecognizable” world by 2050, researchers warned at a major US science conference Sunday. The United Nations has predicted the global population will reach seven billion this year, and climb to nine billion by 2050, “with almost all of the growth occurring in poor countries, particularly Africa and South Asia,” said John Bongaarts of the non-profit Population Council.

To feed all those mouths, “we will need to produce as much food in the next 40 years as we have in the last 8,000,” said Jason Clay of the World Wildlife Fund at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). “By 2050 we will not have a planet left that is recognizable” if current trends continue, Clay said. The swelling population will exacerbate problems, such as resource depletion, said John Casterline, director of the Initiative in Population Research at Ohio State University.

But incomes are also expected to rise over the next 40 years — tripling globally and quintupling in developing nations — and add more strain to global food supplies. People tend to move up the food chain as their incomes rise, consuming more meat than they might have when they made less money, the experts said.

It takes around seven pounds (3.4 kilograms) of grain to produce a pound of meat, and around three to four pounds of grain to produce a pound of cheese or eggs, experts told AFP. “More people, more money, more consumption, but the same planet,” Clay told AFP, urging scientists and governments to start making changes now to how food is produced.

Population experts, meanwhile, called for more funding for family planning programs to help control the growth in the number of humans, especially in developing nations. “For 20 years, there’s been very little investment in family planning, but there’s a return of interest now, partly because of the environmental factors like global warming and food prices,” said Bongaarts. “We want to minimize population growth, and the only viable way to do that is through more effective family planning,” said Casterline.

Food Costs Are Increasing!

MANILA/MILAN (Reuters) – World food prices hit a record in January and recent catastrophic weather around the globe could put yet more pressure on the cost of food, an issue that has already helped spark protests across the Middle East.
Up for the seventh month in a row, the closely watched Food and Agriculture Organization Food Price Index on Thursday touched its highest since records began in 1990, and topped the peak of 224.1 in June 2008, during the food crisis of 2007/08.
“The new figures clearly show that the upward pressure on world food prices is not abating. These high prices are likely to persist in the months to come,” FAO economist and grains expert Abdolreza Abbassian said in a statement.
Surging food prices have come back into the spotlight after they helped fuel the discontent that toppled Tunisia’s president in January and have spilled over to Egypt and Jordan, raising expectations other countries in the region would secure grain stocks to reassure their populations.
World Bank President Robert Zoellick urged global leaders to “put food first” and wake up to the need to curb increased price volatility.
“We are going to be facing a broader trend of increasing commodity prices, including food commodity prices,” he told Reuters in an interview.
A series of weather events hitting key crops is likely to keep up the pressure on food prices as a massive cyclone batters Australia, a major winter storm ravages U.S. crop belts and flooding hits key commodity producer Malaysia.
National Australia Bank agribusiness economist Michael Creed said food markets may take a while to regain equilibrium.

“The broadbased nature of what crops have been wiped out over the past year means that it’s going to take a while to actually rebuild and get production back in line with consumption,” he said.
White sugar futures hit a record high and raw sugar futures rose to their highest in more than 30 years on fears of the damage Cyclone Yasi would bring to the Australian cane crop.
The worst winter storm for decades in the United States drove wheat futures to the highest in nearly 2-1/2 years, and Malaysian palm oil prices are at 3-year highs as flooding hit crops.

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