What Are ‘Natural’ Foods?

Marion Nestle, NYU’s food guru, explains at her blog, Food Politics:

FoodNavigator.com has issued a collection of its recent articles on “natural” and processing. At issue is the meaning of “natural,” which many people perceive as equivalent to organic or healthy. As I’ve said before, it isn’t.

Rainbow of food natural food colors

Natural has no regulatory meaning. The FDA merely says (note obfuscating double negatives):

From a food science perspective, it is difficult to define a food product that is ‘natural’ because the food has probably been processed and is no longer the product of the earth.

That said, FDA has not developed a definition for use of the term natural or its derivatives. However, the agency has not objected to the use of the term if the food does not contain added color, artificial flavors, or synthetic substances.

One thing is clear: “natural” sells food products.

Selling processed foods in a whole food world? Authenticity is key: Consumers increasingly are choosing whole and unprocessed foods – so is it the end of the line for processed food manufacturers? …

[continues at Food Politics]

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  • http://twitter.com/alizardx A.Lizard

    I’ve wanted to see a food item labeled INORGANIC in stores for the last few years.

    • Anti_Secret_Squirrel

       Or they could just put a giant bio hazard symbol on it! LOL