Target admits it misrepresented milk as organic
Not often do you hear a corporate giant publicly admit wrongdoing, but Minneapolis-based Target did just that this week -- albeit in a sort of backhanded way -- acknowledging that it misidentified some of its soy milk products as organic in newspaper ads earlier this year. KARE 11 reports:
Target told the USDA that it used an outdated photo in the September advertisement that promoted the product in a carton that it no longer uses, said the letter from Miles McEvoy, deputy administrator of USDA's National Organic Program.
The big box retailer came under fire in October when a Wisconsin-based farm policy research group filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture about it use of ads for Silk-brand soy milk that indicated the product was organic when it really wasn't. The organization took issue with the error, saying it takes advantage of consumers.
Cornucopia Institute co-director Mark Kastel said he didn't think Target was purposefully trying to defraud people, but the mistake was more a sign of how a large retailer doesn't properly train employees to prevent such mistakes.
Consumers typically pay more for organic food because they believe it is free of hormones or pesticides and produced with greater respect for the environment.
Cornucopia's going even farther up the food chain now, to the company that produces the soy milk in question, Dallas-based Dean Foods, which Cornucopia says continues to misidentify its product as organic when it has in fact been derived from conventionally-grown soybeans.