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Nick Corwin

In my opinion, Ritter made a good choice by interviewing sports psychologists and not professional athletes. Professional athletes are generally trained to maintain their positive self-image or the positive image of their team to social media and the public. If the athletes were to be interviewed they would give a perspective of the specific incident to maintain their desired image. Sports psychologists especially would know the most in types of situations studying how the athlete’s brain processes under different stressors and whether the athletes are behaving abnormally or not.

Athletes and any random individual should not have different set standards regarding their behavior. Anything is acceptable in moderation. For example, frustration is a human emotion consisting of anger and stress and when expressed, any regular individual may cause harm to an inanimate object. Personally I have caused a lot of harm towards inanimate objects before. When I mentioned that anything is acceptable in moderation, that means that if anybody frequently “lashes out” then it begins to be improper whether that person is an athlete or not. In moderation, it is a healthy way to release anger if someone can project harm to an inanimate object as long as that person does not physically inflict damage to that object, although there are better ways to assert frustration. A more desirable way to exhibit frustration would be to exercise, but either way would be acceptable.

Social media concentrates their stories on whatever is going to make a successful headline. For example, if a professional football player were to volunteer at a Feed My Starving Children facility or donate 5% of their multi-million dollar salary to a charity, media wouldn’t make a headline from it. On the other hand, if that same football player were to commit a crime such as DUI or domestic abuse, it will appear in the newspaper the next day. Just because many people “place athletes on pedestals”, that does not necessarily mean that there is an excess amount of pressure placed on the athletes. The athletes are put on pedestals primarily as role models, not as voodoo dolls where people expect perfection from them.

Athletes sign up for the lifestyle of media constantly recording their failures. They do not deserve any pity for being publicly displayed for their failures, because the athletes are also praised for all of their accomplishments. It would be unconstitutional for athletes to set standards for the press’ coverage on athletes’ performance regarding the first amendment. There may be guidelines to how far the press can reach the athletes in the locker room, but the media deserves to cover stories where the public has access.

B. Hauptmann

1. I would say that the word debate is being used more as to a health aspect then the two extremes. I believe Chang mentions it that way since that is how it has always been referred to since almost the creation of the arguments for and against organic food. Ever since someone claimed that organic was healthier there has been large debates about it so it makes for a very good word choice in this article.

2. I personally do not choose to buy organic food when at the market. My reasoning for this is mainly because before I read this article I already assumed that there was no real health benefits to organic food over ones treated with pesticides. Along with that I also realized that organic food costs more. This article did not sway my opinion to buy or not to buy organic food since all it did is confirm my suspicious.

3. In regards to the food study by Stanford, I believe Maxfield would state that the findings are quite meaningless when it comes to the health aspect of it. Maxfield’s view on food seems to not really view food in the aspect of what’s considered healthier or unhealthier but moreover to that people will eat what they want no matter if the food is deemed healthy or not. I came to this conclusion from her closing statement which goes along the lines of saying that there really is no unhealthy or healthy food but its more to the idea that those thoughts are being projected onto us from various people and media.

4. Kenneth Chang’s article is very straight forward and does not show extreme bias. He never shows he true feelings either way but just states statistical facts and quotes from people on either side of the debate. I do agree with his interpretation of the study since all that Chang writes about are pure statistical facts. I believe that Stanford did an excellent job in their study and it looks to me that they more than likely followed all of the proper procedures that led to the results. I do believe that the results can be a little misleading since the article does state that Stanford intentionally left out certain results to make the numbers appear better in favor of the inorganic food. This is apparent near the end of the article when it states that they left out the fact that they organic strawberries showed a greater amount of vitamin C in than the strawberries treated with pesticides. Through doing this the study loses some credibility and allows the people who do believe that organic food are vastly better than regular food to have a nice foothold in a rebuttal.

Ryan Simon

Throwing Ripe Tomatoes at Organic Foods
Ryan Simon
Iowa State University

1. There is a lot more to the debate than if organic foods are a smart choice for healthier living or if it is just a marketing tool for people to buy more expensive food. There are other factors, such as the amount of pesticide residue on organic foods compared to conventional foods, the amount of antibiotic resistant bacteria that conventional meat was contaminated with, and the negative environmental impact that conventional farms have. Research found that 38% of conventional produce had detectable pesticide residue, while only 7% of organic produce was found to have residue. Research also showed that organic meats have significantly less antibiotic bacteria than conventional meats. Many organic advocates claim that this is a reason why many people are choosing to buy organic foods. Not because they think that organic foods are healthier, which the Stanford study found that organic foods had no additional health benefits than conventional foods, but because less pesticide residue and bacteria are found in organic foods. Add in the fact that many people believe conventional farms are having a negative impact on the environment, and this is why organic advocates think people are purchasing their goods. I think Chang posed it this way because the study that was performed at Stanford was not to study the amount of pesticides or bacteria in organic food, but the health benefits they offer. The goal of the experiment was to see if organic foods were more health beneficial than conventional foods.

2. In the past, when I had a choice to choose an organic good, I usually did. I never performed research to see if they had more health benefits, but on the news and in the newspapers, all I heard about was how organic foods were much better for people than conventional foods. Chang’s article will definitely have an impact on me when deciding between organic or conventional foods. The price of organic goods is not worth the extra money you are paying. According to this study, organic foods have no extra health benefits, they just have less pesticide residue and bacteria. The amount of pesticides is still below the safety thresholds, and has little to no harm on the body. I will no longer buy organic goods over conventional goods after reading Chang’s article.

3. I think that she would say that both organic and conventional foods are going to give you the same health affects and that it’s not what a person eats, its how they eat it. Mary Maxfield says that America is, “A notably unhealthy population preoccupied with the idea of eating healthy.” The food industry is capitalizing on American’s confusion over how to eat right. When talking about organic foods, I think that she would say that it is not whether you eat organic or conventional foods, it is what kinds of foods you eat. I think that she would say this because in her article she says, “What a person eats rarely takes primacy over how they eat it.” People can continue to eat what they have been, but it is important to have an understanding of how much to eat and what else to eat it with. When people eat food primarily for health represents, the purpose of food vanishes. Food is supposed to give us energy and be the fuel our bodies desperately need.

4. After reading the other articles, I feel like Chang’s article is unbiased and straightforward. I agree with Changs’s interpretations of study results for several reasons. In his article, Chang mentions that organic foods do offer higher levels of phosphorus and phenols, but he says that both of these don’t necessarily mean that organic foods are healthier. He states that we already get enough phosphorus in our diets, so the prosperous from organic foods isn’t that beneficial. Phenols, which are said to help prevent cancer, are known to be found more in organic foods, but the difference from convention foods is still being studied. Another reason I agree with Chang’s interpretation is because he mentions that conventional produce has higher amounts of pesticides than organic produce and organic meats have lower amounts of bacteria than conventional meats. He isn’t biased one way or the other. He gives all the facts about organic foods that were found through research and it backs up what he says.
My own impressions of the Stanford study is that if you want food with less pesticides and bacteria, then you should buy organic foods. If you are looking for which is healthier for you, I think that you should purchase conventional foods. They are cheaper, and according to the Stanford study, are just as healthy for you. The facts are out there, people need to look at them and make an educated decision on which would be most beneficial to them.


1)I think there is more to the debate than just whether organic foods are a smart choice for healthier living or a marketing tool that is making people overpay. The majority of the article discusses about how the organic foods are full of nutrients and how little of the pesticides they contain, Chang also compares them to the conventional food. Different factors like the amount of pesticides used on both types of food and the benefits of each on people, and also the negative impact of
conventional foods were compared with the organic foods.

2)I do choose to buy organic foods when I have the option to do so, because that’s how I saw it until now, that organic foods were organically grown, had little chemicals and were fuller of nutrients than conventional ones. However after reading the article I found out it’s not worth paying more for organic foods if the only difference is that it contains less pesticides and bacteria than conventional. Also according to the article the pesticides that are used on the conventional foods are little harm to our body and that it is below the safety thresholds it makes it more convincing that conventional foods are as healthy as organic.

3)Mary Maxfield mainly discusses about how a person should eat right, not what a person should eat in her article. I think she would say that either the organic or the convention food would be good for a person if they chose to eat right. I think she would say it’s not about eating organic or conventional food but it’s about looking at what they are eating and the quantity of it. I believe she would say this because she mentions in her article that “...making decisions like choosing fresh mozzarella over spray cheese, the “right” foods over the “wrong ones”.

4)I think Chang’s article is pretty straightforward and is not biased in any way. Although he is comparing organic foods to conventional, he is merely stating the facts and opinions of people on both sides. I agree with his interpretation of the study results because he mentions how organic foods are healthier and contain less pesticides residue, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that conventional foods are unhealthy. He mentions the only concern with conventional food is that it contains more pesticides, but it is shown they are little to no harm to human body. I think it really depends on how people see it and what they prefer but according the Stanford results conventional foods are as healthy as organic ones and also much cheaper.

F. Ramirez

1. The word “debate” is used in a form to show the two extreme opinions about the health aspect of organic or nonorganic foods. Kenneth Chang uses the word “debate” about organic and inorganic foods to define the differences in how customers decide whether to buy organic and inorganic foods and the prices they are willing to pay for one. When claimed that organic foods were healthier, researchers continuously tried to prove if this theory was true. They are currently trying to prove this. Depending on their results, it allows them to agree or disagree with the statement of organic foods being healthier. My personal opinion is that it depends on what people consider to be healthy. The word “debate” is used appropriately in this article because different people have different opinions that have valuable reasons to argue their belief.

2. Personally, I have never purchased organic foods because of its high prices and I don’t taste a difference in organic and inorganic foods. The information in this article will not affect me at this point in my life. Possibly in the future when I have a family, I may decide to feed them organic foods since it does have fewer pesticides. It was claimed that mothers who eat inorganic foods tend to have children with lower IQs.

3. Regarding the study by Stanford, Mary Maxfield wouldn’t be concerned about the results, because she believes people will continue to eat and worry about whether it was healthy or not later in the future. Her belief is that this is just a custom to humans. It doesn’t matter what they eat as long as the food they are consuming satisfies them. Maxfield states “that “religion” presents itself in the moralizing of food, the attempt-in how we eat-to rise above our beastly nature.” To me, this means that even our culture and our religion portrays us eating like animals. So most people think is considered appropriate because they refer back to their culture and their religion.

4. In my opinion, Chang’s article is straight forward and is not bias. I do agree with the study because it never took sides between organic or inorganic foods. All it did was present the facts on the studies performed. It showed the side effects and benefits of both organic and inorganic foods. Stanford did a great job with the study, in which they allowed the decision to be made by the individual consuming the produce. It is up to them to decide for themselves whether it is consider healthy and good for their diet rather than the study deciding. This debate will continue because both sides have relatively strong reasons.

S Gibson

1. The debate about the value of organic food is more than a simple matter of two extremes. There are some people that are harshly against organic and some that are against conventional fruits and vegetables. There are some Americans that have moderate views about which choice they make in the produce section. The moderates in the organic-nonorganic fight might purchase some items organic and some that are not. It is truly hard to live a 100% organic lifestyle. In most places you wouldn’t be able to buy everything on your grocery list organic because there are things that are not organic. Some countries that are poorer than others can’t afford to go organic. Therefore, that produce won’t be available for the consumer to buy all organic. Chang posted the article with a two sided approach in order to polarize the reader into either a conventional or organic buyer. The article has a better effect on the reader if the reader has an opinion so Chang wrote it this way because it lured the reader into choosing a side. Once you have placed yourself into a group the article becomes that much more compelling and effective.
2.I do not choose organic food when given the option because I personally don’t see the benefits of spending more for essentially the same product. I worked at a grocery store and I had the opportunity to test many different organic fruits and vegetables and I did not notice that big of a difference in taste or quality, at least not an extra sixty cents per pound of difference. Chang’s article will not influence my food choices because I agree with the results of the study. Personally, I don’t see how slight nutritional benefit from the absence of pesticides can outweigh the financial burden. The product isn’t worth the price.
3.Maxfield would say that the study is valid from the bias toward the diet industry or the conventional farmers. I think that Maxfield would agree with the results of the study. She clearly, in her article, was against food and food theories not backed by solid evidence supporting why they are healthy. Organics didn’t have solid evidence confirming their above average benefits and now they have evidence against their nutritional benefit. She also might claim that there is just an organic society, Americans that go organic just because it’s organic. In her article, she talks about how our understanding of health is based on culture as much as fact. I worked in a grocery store for 2 years and over that time the sale of organic produce have gone up and more total organic stores are opening in many towns. The organic lifestyle has become a culture change in America. Maxfield would say that there are some consumers that buy organic just because it’s the culture to do so.
4.Chang’s article was fairly unbiased. Chang stayed very close to the study. In the other articles, they went into the community and examined what the people were buying and why. The Des Moines Register article said some 53% of people said they cared more about the pesticides rather than nutrition. There could be an argument that Chang was biased toward focusing on the studies negative shine on the organic products. The study did shine a negative light on some of the organic community’s claims about the nutritional value of their product. Therefore I can’t say that Chang was biased because he clearly just reported the conclusions of the study. I think that the Des Moines article did a better job of finding out what the consumer was looking for and not just the organic suppliers. As for the Study itself, I believe that it finally justified that the conventional banana is just as good for you as an organically grown banana. Some people may say that they don’t want to eat some with trace amounts of antibiotics or pesticides but these chemicals are highly regulated. Americans have been eating these “horrible” substances for decades and my grandpa and I are still living. I trust the environmental protection agency and the standards they set on the residue. The people who purchase organic produce are a little extreme when they say that the trace amounts pesticides and hormones are bad for humans. The study clearly denies their claim. The results of the study reassure me that buying conventional foods is just as good as the more expensive organic product.

Lorena Temple

1. The great debate over organic food isn’t simply over the smart choice for healthier living or speculation that it is a marketing tool. There are many different aspects involved in the debate over whether organic food is more nutritious than conventional foods. Chang starts off his article with the results from the Stanford study. In the beginning he talks about organic foods are proven to not have any more nutritional value than conventional food. But this doesn’t stop people from buying organic food. People are going to continue to buy organic food because they have other reasons, besides nutrition, to choose organic food over conventional food. Towards the end of his article, Chang demonstrates how people do not want to ingest chemicals, whether they are at a safe limit or not. The principle for these consumers is to eat food that is better for them in the long run and benefit from organic food other ways, other than nutritional reasons. Chang brought up both sides of organic foods to help show the good and the not so good side of these foods. The organic trend isn’t so much a marketing tool because it’s more of a preference to people. Many consumers are willing to pay the high price of organic food to make sure they are not getting any pesticide residue or other added things in their food. Chang may have also posted his article this way to show the science behind organic food. The Stanford studies points out the non-beneficial side of organic food. In conclusion, there are many dynamics and views when it comes to organic food. It’s up to the consumer to choose what side of the debate they are on, and they will use their money to express if they want organic food or not.
2. When I have the option to choose organic foods, most of the time I don’t. First of all, as a college student it is more difficult for me to get to a farmers market, let alone a grocery store, to pick out organic food. Second of all, if I were to get to either one of those places, I would still more than likely not choose the organic food because it is the more costly option. I happen to be one of those college students who doesn’t have the left over cash or funds to put towards costly organic food. That does not mean that I will completely avoid organic food when I come across it. After reading Kenneth Chang’s article, I am more conscious of the benefits organic food has over other foods that aren’t organic. In his studies, organic foods had less pesticide residue and some foods did have more nutritional value, such as the organic milk that contained more omega 3 fatty acids. Like most people, I would want food that is good for me, which is why I would be more likely to choose organic foods if it were more available and convenient for me. If organic food was less expensive or the same price as other groceries, I would chose the organic food. Also, if organic foods were locally grown, I would be even more inclined to pick that organic food over any other option. What it comes down to when choosing organic foods over anything else is the price of the organic food and whether or not it will not it is convenient for me.
3. Mary Maxfield concludes her essay with this statement, “Trust yourself. Trust your body. Meet your needs.” With this statement you can get a good grasp of what Mary Maxfield is trying to communicate to her readers. Americans have become so concerned and caught up with what the media and health specialists have to say about food, they have forgotten what it’s like to eat food without regrets. People are more reliant on what critics have to say about food choices and they don’t take their own perspectives into account sometimes. The media plays a key role in determining what is good and what is bad when it comes to food. As Kate Harding says in Maxfield’s essay, “If you scratch an article on the obesity crisis, you will almost always find a press release from a company that’s developing a weight loss drug.” All these tests and analysis continues drive people in many different directions. After reading Maxfield’s essay, I don’t think she would agree with the Stanford study. The media, along with critics, are pushing toward a healthy diet that includes organic or low fat/ sodium foods. Stanford’s studies showed how organic foods are beneficial in some ways, but they ultimately aren’t any more nutritious than food that is not organic. Either way, food is food and if it’s what your body needs, then you should give your body what it wants. Some people get so involved in the organic trends, they forget that it’s ok to eat food not grown or made organically. We, as consumers, are the ones who give value to organic and any other type of food. Does that mean organic foods have no value? The answer to that is no, organic foods are valuable in many ways, but it’s not something essential for the perfect diet. You can still look and feel good about yourself without falling into the organic trend. You just have to believe in yourself and trust that other foods fuel your body just as well.
4. In Chang’s article, he primarily talks about the other side of organic food. The Standford study shows how organic foods are not significantly more nutritious than conventional food. In the first part of Chang’s article he talks about all the different results that were uncovered in the Standford study. In the beginning, I felt as if his article was pointing toward the negative or unbeneficial side of organic foods. Later on, Chang’s article talked more about the good things organic foods have to offer, such as organic chicken and pork were not as likely to contaminated by antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Chang’s article not only gave examples of the beneficial side of organic food, he also explained why people buy organic food over conventional food. Talking about the good side of organic foods made Chang’s article unbiased because he mentioned both sides of organic foods. As mentioned in the Des Moines Register and Consumer Reports, people buy organic food over conventional food simply because they do not want any chemical residue on their food. Kate Netz, a Des Moines dietitian, said “I don’t want to ingest pesticides, chemicals, hormones, antibiotics and God knows whatever else they put in food for the sole purpose of making a bigger profit (Des Moines Register).” Others find organic food more tasteful and fresh. These factors are what motivate consumers to buy organic food. For the most part, I do agree with Chang’s interpretation of the study results because he talks about both sides of organic foods. It was difficult to fully understand Chang’s article at first, but once I continued reading, I realized what Chang saying. Altogether, Chang’s article wasn’t completely straightforward. He seemed favorable toward one side in the beginning of his article, and later on he demonstrated the other side of the Standford study. To be straight forward an author must state exactly what their point is toward the beginning of the article and carry that same idea throughout the whole article.

my paris hotel

1. I would say that the word debate is being used more as to a health aspect then the two extremes. I believe Chang mentions it that way since that is how it has always been referred to since almost the creation of the arguments for and against organic food. Ever since someone claimed that organic was healthier there has been large debates about it so it makes for a very good word choice in this article.

2. I personally do not choose to buy organic food when at the market. My reasoning for this is mainly because before I read this article I already assumed that there was no real health benefits to organic food over ones treated with pesticides. Along with that I also realized that organic food costs more. This article did not sway my opinion to buy or not to buy organic food since all it did is confirm my suspicious.

3. In regards to the food study by Stanford, I believe Maxfield would state that the findings are quite meaningless when it comes to the health aspect of it. Maxfield’s view on food seems to not really view food in the aspect of what’s considered healthier or unhealthier but moreover to that people will eat what they want no matter if the food is deemed healthy or not. I came to this conclusion from her closing statement which goes along the lines of saying that there really is no unhealthy or healthy food but its more to the idea that those thoughts are being projected onto us from various people and media.

4. Kenneth Chang’s article is very straight forward and does not show extreme bias. He never shows he true feelings either way but just states statistical facts and quotes from people on either side of the debate. I do agree with his interpretation of the study since all that Chang writes about are pure statistical facts. I believe that Stanford did an excellent job in their study and it looks to me that they more than likely followed all of the proper procedures that led to the results. I do believe that the results can be a little misleading since the article does state that Stanford intentionally left out certain results to make the numbers appear better in favor of the inorganic food. This is apparent near the end of the article when it states that they left out the fact that they organic strawberries showed a greater amount of vitamin C in than the strawberries treated with pesticides. Through doing this the study loses some credibility and allows the people who do believe that organic food are vastly better than regular food to have a nice foothold in a rebuttal.


Patricia McGoff

Stanford claims that there is no distinguishing benefit in choosing organic foods over conventional ones. If they are right about this, then major consequences follow for many farmers. If the research concludes that there is no difference between organic food and conventional food, organic food will just be considered “…a marketing tool that gulls people into overpaying”. Chang’s article about Stanford’s study seemed unbiased. Chang seemed to highlight the good and the bad aspects of Stanford’s study. Stanford’s report did not seem to be definitive. Personally, I choose organic foods most of the time because it is better for my health and the environment. Chang’s article will not have any effect on my food choices. Regardless of what studies show, common sense would lead to knowing that consuming pesticides, hormones, antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and additives would be harmful.


The first thing I noticed after reading this article is that the study was actually a meta-analysis. So there was no real study that actually concluded that organic food wasn't any more nutritional than conventional food. The article stated that non-organic foods are still within standards of not being harmful to humans and that organic foods have less pesticides than non-organic foods. I think that is one of the main reasons why people pay extra for organic foods. I mean, if you had the choice to buy something more natural that didn't have chemicals on it, especially your food, wouldn't you buy it? I suppose the same goes for conventional, if it's cheaper and it doesn't harm you, why not buy it. I can see where the questions arise and how some people might think about their food choices. The argument in the article is that organic food holds more nutrients than conventional and to which they've concluded there really isn't a difference. It seems more like people who buy organic foods don't buy them because they think they're going to get more nutrients out of them, it's that they don't want all that crap like pesticides and other chemicals all over the food they ingest!

Personally, I think there is a lot more to conventional food and that there's more to it than just pesticides. I've noticed that conventional fruit tends to be bigger and have less flavor than an organic fruit which may be smaller, but taste so much better. They add chemicals and wax on certain fruits to make them more appealing, but they don't taste as appealing. To me, the scariest thing is that we pay extra for organic food and it is sometimes seen as being more special, when really its just how regular food is supposed to be! When did adding chemicals and fillers to food become so massive and un-noticed that most people just consider that kind of food to be normal? I feel that there is so much not said and not out in the open about our food that it becomes easy for people to never even pay attention to what has changed about the food they buy.

Enrique Reyes

I have never been a person to be interested in the organic food category as I do not see any advantage over organic foods and now there is a study to support my thoughts. Before pesticides farmers would grow foods that today would be called organic and many of their crops did not survive. With the introduction of pesticides and hormones that are not harmful to the plants or humans, there has been more production of fruit and vegetables that have longer shelf lives and are greater in size. One significant advantage that was found was the higher levels of phosphorus in organic food, but because people already have enough phosphorus in their diets acquired through other foods, there really is no benefit of the organic produce. With no significant benefits over organic produce, the benefits that pesticides offer are greater than those produced organically. When pesticides are grown, plants ward of insects and funguses that may harm the plant and also with pesticides produce can grow faster, bigger, and last longer off the vines. Overall I think the high price of organic foods does not really fit as the benefits are not significant. If there was a real benefit to all the organic produce with a lower price, then more people would buy it, but even on organic farms, the fruits and vegetables get tainted with pesticides form surrounding farms. If someone really wanted to get naturally organic fruits or vegetables the only viable reason would be to start producing their produce at home. With technology in all fields improving everyday it will be no time before new pesticides that offer great advantages to the foods they are used and without traces left in humans which would make organic produce obsolete.


I agree with Adrienne about the reason people buy organic versus conventional fruits and vegetables. I think the majority of people who buy organic choose to do so because they want to avoid chemicals and pesticides on their food and rightly so. I mean, let’s use our critical thinking skills here- pesticides are meant to kill living beings. How can people assume that ingesting those kinds of “killing” chemicals are not going to have any negative effect on people’s bodies? Honestly, the thought of eating pesticides is really scary to me. I do not think that the effects of pesticides and chemicals have been truly studied and understood. And, I believe that they are actually harming our bodies and our environment. According to “Facts You Need to Know about Cancer,” it states that the cancer rates have gone up by 44 percent since 1950. Of course there are many unknowns as to what has caused this huge jump, since much has changed during this time. But, an interesting thing to note is that pesticide use began around the 1950’s. Coincidence? I do not think so. We need to start realizing that we only have one body and once it is gone, it is gone. Why would people choose to put harmful chemicals into their only body, instead of paying only a couple cents extra for organic foods? I know that I do not want to chance it by saying, “well maybe conventional foods are not bad for me. They are cheaper, so I might as well save some cash.” This is our lives we are talking about. In my opinion, I think it is better to spend more money upfront on good, healthy foods and live a long healthier life rather than buying cheap conventional foods and spending that money later on life on hospital bills.

Tyler Steffes

Tyler Steffes
English 106

The debate for organic foods has never been that they offer more nutritional value, or contain less bacteria. The debate starts around the basic fact that organic foods are not washed in chemicals and pesticides from before they’re put in the ground until they reach our homes. Using these extremes that Chang mentions is like saying that tanning beds offer less bacteria than bathrooms, so they are obviously the better choice when trying to decide where to spend your time. To pose an argument using only the facts that fall in your favor, while largely ignoring the main fact that supports the other side of the argument is not taking into account both sides, and therefore discredits your argument to the audience. Chang probably posed his argument this way because he thought it would make his side seem stronger.

I personally do choose organic foods when possible. I choose organic foods because of the absence of chemicals, and also because I’m not only feeding myself but my children. The daily exposure of chemicals to our bodies is astounding, and I try to make decisions daily to keep my house chemical free, including the food I bring home. Chang’s article will not my food choices, it taught me nothing that I didn’t already know. I don’t choose organic because they’re more nutritional, I choose fruits and vegetables in general because of that. I choose organic for their lack of chemicals, which is briefly mentioned in his article.

Mary Maxfield‘s focus in her address on food moralization is not on what we eat, but how it’s eaten. I do not think she would give much value to the organic status of the food, but may lend it towards a current food trend keeping Americans from focusing on the true issue at hand, which is the healthiness of their diets. The study showing that organic food isn’t more nutritious than non-organic would swap Maxfield to lose interest in the classification, because beyond the health of the food there is little to be concerned of.

I believe Chang’s article was professionally written, but not unbiased. I think he wrote it with the intentions of showing the positive aspects of non-organic food, such as price and nutrition. He barely skimmed an important aspect of organic buying motives, which is the lack of pesticides, and the article itself was titled, “Casting doubts on the Advantage of Organics,” when he did not take into account if the article even made people doubtful. To title an article so that it casts negativity onto a subject you’re arguing with clearly shows a bias, in my eyes. The Des Moines Register’s article in response to Chang’s article took into account not only the consumer’s motives for buying organic, which Chang barely mentioned, but also the fact that the study did not cast doubts among consumers.

Brittany Miller

1. In Chang’s debate, he is not necessarily talking about the prices of foods, but is talking more about whether or not organic foods are a smarter choice than conventional foods. He briefly states about the price differentiation in organic and conventional foods. Chang is explaining how organic foods are not always more beneficial than conventional foods are due to pesticide residue, health advantages and benefits. This debate that Stanford has found is just going to keep people second guessing themselves when they want to live a healthy lifestyle and they are not sure if what they are buying is the best thing for them. I believe that Stanford is just trying to prove the point that organic food may be healthier for you, but that does not mean it is healthier for your wallet.
2. I try to eat very healthy and there are times where I think organic foods are healthier for me. The only argument I have against buying organic foods is that they tend to be more costly than conventional foods. I have recently switched to Greek yogurt because of the healthy bacteria cultures that conventional yogurts do not necessarily have. Besides for yogurt though, I do not tend to buy organic foods and probably will not buy them in the future unless the pricing of those foods will go down in the future.
3. I believe that Mary Maxfield would be in favor of the Stanford study. She makes the statement that billboards and fast food restaurants are the reason for obesity. Maxfield makes it obvious that is the person’s choice about what they put into their body. That being said, for a person to make the choice about them wanting to ingest healthy, organic foods is their choice. She might just say that it is better for a person to eat healthier even though it may cost a higher amount then buying conventional foods. The Stanford study, I believe, would make Maxfield’s beliefs in eating healthy stronger.
4. After reading the article from the Des Moines Register, I believe that the Stanford University study was more biased than they wanted to lead on. The Des Moines Register made it easier to read about the information of organic and conventional foods. It made the point that consumers who buy organic foods do not second guess themselves as to why they are buying said products. They also mention the fact that when people buy organic products, it is actually stimulating the produce economy and helps out small farm farmers. The small farm farmers are the ones who do not use pesticides on their crops but use nature’s remedies. In a way, I do agree with Chang’s interpretation of the study results, but he needs to look at more of the beneficial factors that organic products have on people and the economy.

Gabriela Olague

There has always been a debate whether or not organic food is quite more beneficial than conventional food. In my opinion I believe that yes it is more beneficial for individuals to consume organic foods instead of conventional food. Just as it is stated in Chang article, “The production of organic food is governed by a raft of regulations that generally prohibit the use of synthetic pesticides, hormones and additives.” With this done to organic food those consumers who rather consume organic food they are in less risk of poisoning themselves from pesticides or fetal death as well as it can cause birth defects. There have been differences that have been examine between both type of foods such as conventional and organic. Another benefit from organic food is that pork and chicken meat are in less risk of being contaminated by antibiotic resistant bacteria. Omega three fatty acids are quite beneficial for the heart in which there was a study done as well that showed that organic milk contain way more omega three fatty acids. Realistically the majority of individuals go for conventional foods because it comes out to be way cheaper than organic food would. But in the long run what would really benefit individuals is the outcome of consuming organic foods. These types of food s have no chemicals what so ever than can lead on to a bacteria or a disease. Organic foods are naturally grown in the fields without no hormones invest in them to make them grown in a matter of time. Society should be more concerned about every factor that may lead themselves to health issues and try to make better choices regarding what it is that they are consuming in reality.

Blair Paez

In the article “Stanford Scientists Cast Doubt on Advantages of Organic Meat and Produce” by Kenneth Chang, the author presents the findings of a study done by Stanford scientists showing that there is minimal proof to organic food being more nutritious than conventional food. Though, this may be a valid point for conventional food, I do not believe it is persuasive enough to discredit the validity of buying organic over other options. The research founded by the Stanford scientists does show that there is no increase in nutritional value in organic food, but it also provides statistics that organic produce does significantly reduce pesticide residue. The research showed that only 7% of organic food was contaminated with pesticide residue compared to 38% of conventional food. Why this is important is because it has been proven that pesticides are harmful chemicals that have negative effects on the body and people’s health. Most people who endeavor to eat produce that are filled with nutritious value is because they want to take care of their body and their health. Therefore, choosing the produce with the higher percent of pesticide residue would not be in their best interest because that could potential mean more harm on their body, even if it has the same amount of nutritious value. Thus, organic food is still the better option for those who seek a healthier lifestyle. Lastly, the research done did not speak to the fact that the use of antibiotics can cause resistant bacteria to emerge. The only thing mentioned was that if the meat is cooked properly the resistant bacteria would be killed. This can barely be considered a solution when the bigger issue is not killing the resistant bacteria, but stopping the spread of these bacteria to the human population. In order to achieve that, the animals must be organically raised without antibiotics, and placed back onto their natural diet rather than on a diet of corn. Simply cooking the meat well will not solve the issue of resistant bacteria because there are still farm factories all over the United States that are breeding grounds for these resistant strands. This not only leads to the meat being contaminated, but also leads to run off that can infect communities with these strands. Plus, the meat before it is cooked can unknowingly transfer the bacteria to produce that may be eaten without it being cooked. Thus, simply telling the public to cook their meat all the way through is no solution for a problem as big as this. Therefore, the benefits to organic food outweigh the fact that it may only have the same amount of nutritional value as conventional food.

Nathan Marsh

Stanford scientists say that organic foods do not contain any additional vitamins or nutrients compared to conventional foods. However, they do claim from the study they conducted, that organic foods do have less pesticide on them compared to conventional foods. The question I have is why the Stanford scientists would lean more towards the maybe not side of organic foods when their study helps to back-up the reason why so many people buy organic foods these days. In the article the scientists conclude, “…that 38 percent of conventional produce tested in the studies contained detectable residues, compared with 7 percent for the organic produce.” I think that their study helps the maybe side of buying organic foods. I do not buy organic foods because I believe they have higher nutritional content, so their finding on that does not sway me. I buy organic foods because I want to limit my exposure to pesticides, believe it to be better on the environment, and because it makes me feel good knowing that, the food is organic. The term organic, does not mean that it has zero pesticides. Organic means that the farmers only use pesticides that do not contain man-made compounds. For example, a conventional farmer would use a man-made pesticide to kill fungus; however, an organic farmer would use a natural compound like sulfur instead. In addition, organic means that farmers do not use any genetically modified organisms or GMO’s for short. This is another reason why I feel good about buying organic food and you should as well. I know that I am not ingesting GMO’s or synthetic pesticides into my body. I do not even consider the higher prices of buying organic foods. I figure that putting less chemicals and modified foods into my body will help me to stay healthier, and so I am paying less in medical care. I believe organic farming to be better for the environment because none of the chemicals and antibiotics is being used on the produce and commodities. Instead of saving money at the store, I am saving the environment. I am casting my dollar to help pave the way for a cleaner environment and a healthier society. Maybe organic, may be a better future for all of us.

Chamu Sonia

After reading the article, “Stanford Scientists Cast Doubt on Advantages of Organic Meat and Produce,” by Kenneth Chang, I think that both organic and conventional fruits are healthy and safe to eat. It all just depends on the person and what they prefer to eat. Either way, according to the article, they are both as nutritious. When it comes to deciding which to buy, I think it all depends on the person and what they feel comfortable eating. Although one is cheaper, one might think it is not as safe, which is why they go for the organic fruits. Another reason, for why one might prefer organic fruits and vegetables as the article mentioned is because they worry about the effects pesticides will have on the younger children. When buying organic meats or chickens, it does not matter much that it is organic because all the bacteria will be killed off in the cooking process. I think this makes buying organic meat less of a hassle, because the consumer knows any bacteria will be killed off and will not harm their health.
I slightly agree with Patricia McGoff comment about farmers facing consequences if the results show there is no difference. I do think that they will face great consequences because this study is just informing the consumer that they are paying more for the products they buy. These results can affect their business because the consumer will notice they can get the same nutrients from conventional fruits and vegetables at a much cheaper price. However I also think the results from this article will have little effect on the consumer and changing the way they buy their products. People are comfortable eating either organic or conventional. They are both healthy and keep the body fueled. I think that as long as it does not harm us, we are safe to eat whichever one we feel comfortable and enjoy best.


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Abu Bakr Ghaznavi

In essence the only significant fact that can be derived from this study is that organic foods contain less pesticides than conventional foods. There weren't any other nutritional differences besides that. I think that organic food beats conventional food because of the fact that conventional food contains more pesticides.

The UC Berkeley study claimed that children who consumed pesticides would suffer a drop in IQ scores in later years. I'm skeptical of this claim because there is room in that study for a causation-correlation fallacy. The study never determined whether the low IQs caused pesticide consumption or if the pesticide consumption caused lower IQs. I believe that they were implying the latter in order to confirm conventional biases. The UC Berkeley and the Stanford studies fail to provide a concrete basis for either side of the debate.

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