As 'organic' goes mainstream, will standards suffer?

US - Advocates are cheered by the growing appeal of organic foods. But shoppers, confused by labels, don&#39;t always get what they think they paid for.</b> <br><br> Buying organic milk these days - or organic apples, eggs, or beef - no longer has to mean an extra trip to a Whole Foods supermarket or the local co-op. <br><br> Organic products now line the shelves at Safeway and Costco. And Wal-Mart - already the nation&#39;s largest organic-milk seller - says it wants to sell more organic food. Large companies including Kraft, General Mills, and Kellogg own sizable organic- and natural-food brands. Now, they are developing organic versions of their own products, too. <br><br> Still, while some organic-food fans welcome its broadening appeal and availability, others worry that the entry of corporate behemoths into the organic-food market will weaken standards or squeeze out small farmers. <br><br> Meanwhile, consumers scanning the aisles face a jumble of labels and claims - cage-free, natural, free-range, organic - with little to indicate how well those claims match reality. <br><br> <i>Source: CS Monitor</i>

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