Canadian Organic Associations Ban Nanotechnology (Maybe)

Canada has become the latest country following the UK and Australia to ban nanotechnology in organic food. Dag Falck, organic program manager at Nature’s Path Foods explains:

“Genetic engineering is a definable science: splicing genes into crops. With nanotechnology there are at least 1000 different applications, all unregulated with unknown risks.”

As the Canadian organic folks don’t seem to have got around to actually defining what nanotechnology is yet, one suspects that they are rather jumping the gun. It is rather confusing though as FoE, to their credit admit.

Homogenizing milk and grain milling create nanosized particles—milk molecules and wheat flour dust—but would not be considered products of nanotechnology….Nano Green Sciences, Inc. sells a nano-pesticide that they claim is “organic.” Other natural pesticides, such as pyrethrin and copper, could contain nanoparticles and nanosilver could be used to clean vegetables of bacteria.

I wouldn’t claim to be an expert on organic food regulation, but I was rather under the impression that ‘organic’ simply meant free from anything ‘artificial,’ as we discussed  when the UK Soil Association also banned all things nano. It would seem that the natural/man made division would catch all engineered nanomaterials anyway, so explicitly banning them is as much a waste of time as banning cloned sheep from being in organic pigeons or grasshoppers from dancing on the moon.

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