The Academics Review report says consumers have spent hundreds of billion dollars purchasing premium-priced organic food products based on false or misleading perceptions about comparative product food safety, nutrition and health attributes.
The review examined more than 200 published academic, industry and government research reports into why consumers adopt organic product purchasing behaviors. This review was then supplemented with an assessment of more than 1,000 news reports, 500 website and social media account evaluations and reviews of hundreds of other marketing materials, advertisements, analyst presentations, speeches and advocacy reports generated between 1988 and 2014.
Researchers said the findings were reviewed and endorsed by an international panel of independent agricultural science, food science, economic and legal experts from respected international institutions with extensive experience in academic food and agriculture research and publishing.
The research found extensive evidence that widespread, collaborative and pervasive industry marketing activities are a primary cause for these misperceptions. This suggests a widespread organic and natural products industry pattern of research-informed and intentionally-deceptive marketing and paid advocacy.
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