Legal complaint against Wal-Mart
by Redaktion (comments: 0)
The most aggressive watchdog in the USA, the Cornucopia Institute, has filed a formal legal complaint with the USDA asking to investigate allegations of illegal “organic” food distribution by Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. The institute has documented cases of non-organic food products being sold as organic.
Mark Castel of the Cornucopia Institute stated they had first noticed in-store signage to misidentify conventional food as organic in market test store in Texas. Therefore, staff of the institute visited various other Wal-Mart stores and documented similar improprieties in produce and dairy sections. Wal-Mart was notified in September and asked to correct the situation immediately. But the same product misrepresentations were observed later at separate stores in other states.
Mr. Castel called this a serious problem, since organic farmers adopted and followed a range of rigorous practices to ensure the food was in accordance with federal organic regulations. Consumers paying premium prices deserved to get what they paid for. He continued that one could question whether Wal-Mart had the staff expertise needed to fully understand organics. It seemed to him that they were attracted by the profits by the booming organic food sector but had not fully invested in organic integrity. The complaint asks the USDA to investigate. The farm policy organization has indicated they would share their evidence with the investigators. Fines of up to $ 10,000 per violation for proven incidents are provided for in federal organic regulations.
This complaint followed an accusation of September - Wal-Mart of cheapened the value of the organic label by sourcing products from industrial-scale factory-farms and Third World countries.
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