Britain's beleaguered organic sector receives a boost today with a study that suggests organic milk is healthier than the ordinary variety.
The European Union-funded study analysed 22 brands sold in supermarkets and found that organic milk had lower levels of harmful saturated fats and more beneficial fatty acids than conventional milk. While the Newcastle University study stopped short of saying that consumers should switch to organic milk, the lead researcher, Gillian Butler, made that recommendation when discussing her research.
The peer-reviewed paper said the health benefits were present all year round rather than just during the summer, as indicated by research carried out by the same team three years ago into the quality of milk on 25 farms. It contradicts the Food Standards Agency's (FSA) verdict four years ago that organic milk could contain higher levels of short-chain omega-3 fatty acids but that they were of "limited health benefit" compared with the long-chain acids found in oily fish.