Aldi Bans Neonicotinoids And Goes Organic, Becomes Viable Rival Against Whole Foods As Healthiest Grocery Store Chain In The World

Since the 90s, many who support organic growing, especially the green community, have shown an aggressive front against Neonicotinoids. For those who are unfamiliar with what they are, they are a class of neuro-active insecticides chemically similar to nicotine. Though arguments against Neonicotinoids have been on-going for the past two decades, the green community has shown more action against them over the last couple of years, especially with numerous tests conducted on them. For starters, Neonicotinoids have been blamed for the population decline of honeybees and birds. This is extremely bad because it is through honeybees and birds, specifically through their cross-pollination, that the United States grows a third of its crops. Because of this, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a moratorium on Neonicotinoids.

honeybees, Colony Collapse Syndrome
Neonicotinoids have been linked to Colony Collapse Syndrome, a condition in which the honeybee population is dying off rapidly. [Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]

Despite the aforementioned progressive steps, not everyone knows of the EPA’s efforts. Many companies and organizations that handle food, such as grocers and restaurants, are also making a stand to ban Neonicotinoids. Just recently, Aldi announced they would ban Neonicotinoids. However, they are going a step further by going organic too. As a result, Aldo has now become a viable rival to Whole Foods as the healthiest grocery store chain in the world.

Aldi, the grocery chain now making an impact in the United States for its cheap prices, announced this year it will remove eight pesticides from all of its U.S. stores, as reported by Minds. The eight pesticides are Thiamethoxam, Chlorphyrifos, Clothianidin, Cypermethrin, Deltamethrin, Fipronil, Imidacloprid, and Sulfoxaflor. Some of these pesticides are classified as Neonicotinoids. Nevertheless, the fact they are banning them is very important because they are technically the first major grocery store based out of Europe to ban them.

However, the banning of the aforementioned pesticides is just the first step for Aldi. According to Complete Health & Happiness, Aldi is making the necessary moves to become one of the biggest, if not the biggest, organic grocery stores in the world. Below is a detailed list of what Aldi is going to do to achieve their goals too.

  • Aldi will expand their organic food brands, removing some artificial ingredients from products and adding more gluten-free items.
  • Aldi has removed certified synthetic colors, partially hydrogenated oils, and Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) from their private-label products which make up 90 percent of their sales.
  • Aldi will expand their sales of fresh and organic meat and produce. This includes the “Never Any!” brand of meats that contain no added antibiotics, hormones, animal by-products, or other additives.
  • Aldi will expand their SimplyNature line, which is free of more than 125 artificial ingredients. The same goes for their gluten-free line, liveGfree.
  • Aldi’s milk was and still is free of artificial growth hormones, but now their yogurt, sour cream, cottage cheese, and other dairy products will be too.
  • Aldi will offer more high-end foods like artisan cheeses, smoked salmon, quinoa, and coconut oil.
Whole Foods
For years, Whole Foods -- the organic grocery chain -- was recognized as the healthiest grocery chain in the world. With a growing awareness for organic foods, other companies are following in Whole Foods' footsteps becoming rivals to them. [Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images]

It should be known that Aldi has not said they would be 100 percent organic. That means grocery shoppers will still need to look at the labels of their food products to make sure what they are buying is truly 100 percent organic. However, Aldi’s case to being free of Neonicotinoids applies to all their products, something the green community will surely get behind on.

Ultimately, if Aldi continues to cater to the green community, they may one day surpass Whole Foods. It may even happen faster if Whole Foods happens to undercut their demographic which includes numerous instances of mislabeling of organic products to non-organic products.

[Photo by Ralph Orlowski/Getty Images]