Organic-Food Advocates Consider Ban on Air Freight

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A British group that certifies most of the organic produce that is sold in the U.K. may change its rules to deny an "organic" label to food that is flown into the country via air freight, FoodProductionDaily.com reported on Wednesday. The measure is meant to reduce carbon emissions. However, a recent report from the International Trade Centre says if the ban were imposed, it would harm poor farmers in Africa, who produce most of the exports. The demand for organic fruits and vegetables has been an economic boon to more than 20,000 farmers in Egypt, Kenya, Ghana, Zambia and Morocco. The ITC report points out that the proposed ban is meant to encourage local production of food to avert carbon emissions during transport, but African farmers, who would be most harmed by the change, use hardly any fossil fuels.

A decision whether or not to recommend the ban on air freight is expected next week.