Organic baby food could now be even better, due to a new a ban from the Obama administration. Last week, it was announced that two additives – omega-3 fatty acid DHA and omega-6 fatty acid ARA – will no longer be permitted in organic baby food. Although these two ingredients are currently used in 90% of organic baby food and organic baby formula and are marketed as providing the same brain and eye development as breast milk, they have not received legal approval for use in organic food. The fatty acids are produces using hexane, which is potentially a neurotoxin.
The deputy administrator of the USDA, Miles V. McEvoy, says that this new ban
will strengthen the National Organic Program by providing greater confidence for consumers and better information and procedures for producers.
It could take over a year to remove the additives completely from organic baby food and formulas.
Although organic food advocates and many from the USDA applaud this decision for its efforts to increase consumer confidence in the “organic” label, the producers of these fatty acids don’t share these warm and fuzzy feelings. In fact, they claim that that these fatty acids are important for child development, and cannot be produced organically. As such they will continue petitioning to keep these acids in organic baby food and formula.