On the heels of a previous report highlighting the lack of enforcement and oversight in our food system, the U.S. Office of Inspector General’s (OIG) new report on whether milk marketed as organic actually meets the National Organic Program’s (NOP) standards is a real wake-up call to the organic community.
And so it should be. Consumers pay a significant premium for organic products and rightly expect transparency and oversight. However, the OIG’s new report, Agricultural Marketing Service National Organic Program—Organic Milk, exposes major failings of the NOP certification and auditing systems. At a time when consumers are turning their backs on industrialized farming systems—and genetically modified (GM) farming in particular—the new report raises real questions about exactly what people are paying for when they buy organic milk.